Fri Jun 23 2006 09:26 PM
longer look

no major hits in the 20th century, true. they got hit by cat 2 or weaker storms in 1911, 1940, 1947, and 1979. the 1911 and 1940 storms actually came ashore in extreme southern south carolina.
six majors hit in the 19th century. 1804, 1813, 1824, 1854, 1893, 1898. all but the last two were in september... 1893 was late august and 1898 was early october. there were direct hits from other significant hurricanes in 1837 (possibly major) and 1881 (likely cat 2). there was also a significant impact in the area from a northeastward moving storms that hit the northeast gulf of mexico in 1837(2), 1846, and in 1896. all of these were major on the gulf side.
georgia has either been incredibly lucky for a century, or were incredibly unlucky in the 19th century. there's really a lot of uncertainty of which is actually the norm, or if either is... that's the problem with establishing what is normal, because there's only so much history to analyze before there are no reliable records.

the georgia coast is very vulnerable to storm surge, also. the continential shelf is a little wider there, along with a concave coastline. surge naturally collects there; tidal heights are more pronounced along for this coast to begin with. fortunately, it isn't very developed. most of the islands offshore are public land and closed to development... jekyll, st. simons, tybee, wilmington, and to a degree skidaway have development... numerous others have very little on them (cumberland, sapelo, ossabaw, st. catherine's, the altamaha delta islands). coastal development is mostly in chatham (savannah) and glynn (brunswick) counties. camden has a few areas vulnerable to surge like around st. marys and the king's bay complex.... mc intosh has darien and a few small villages.. not a whole lot to break... liberty and bryan are getting more coastal development in the potential surge zone, but due to their locations up marshes the battering action of waves would be mostly damped.. more of a flooding threat. the most potential damage would exist with a west/northwestward moving storm hitting south of savannah, driving the maximum surge into the urbanized area.
HF 0127z24june

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