Unregistered User
Fri Sep 17 2004 04:09 PM
Re: Hurricane Elena, 1985

I live in South Alabama now, and just went through Ivan, but my family lived in Pascagoula, MS when Elena hit in 1985. I was a small child, but I distinctly remember how different the experience was from others. As a previous post said, we heard the hurricane was headed to Florida, so we just forgot about it. I remember my father was away from the house the day of the hurricane. When he heard the news that Elena had turned, he called mother to get us ready, and hurried home. We left our house and went to his office near downtown because it was one of the only buildings in the city that had been built to withstand hurricane force winds. We stayed on the 5th floor of the buildings, and I will never forget standing in front of the storm windows and watching the hurricane reak havoc on the city. I watched as the windows in a car in the parking lot below exploded when the pressure dropped outside. And I watched as bushes in the yard of the house across the street spontaneously uprooted and rolled down the street.
Much of the damage after Elena wasn't terribly severe. And a lot of it would have been preventable had there been the advance notice that typically comes with hurricanes. So many people were just so unprepared for Elena to turn.
Like many hurricanes, some of the most severe damage was due to rain. We lived on a culdesac that flooded and we were unable to drive to our house for days. We were forced to park on a different street and walk through the neighbors' yards to get home. This was my first experience with hurricanes, and although I've been through several more since, Elena was probably my most memorable experience.

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