In the middle of October 1987, a violent storm damaged various portions of the United Kingdom. Winds blowing up to 100 mph caused immense havoc across the country, killing 18 people. Around 15 million trees were destroyed. Many of them landed on highways and trains, causing massive traffic jams. The cost of the damage is estimated at $1 billion ($6.5 billion in 2016 dollars).
The storm was so powerful that scientists believe it may have been driven by a magnetic pole shifting. This would explain why the wind blew from the southwest instead of the usual northeast.
This disaster brought to light the danger that our neighbors to the north face when severe weather hits their continent. Canada experienced its own major storm a few months later called "Alexandra". It killed 13 people and injured several others.
After these two huge storms, government officials realized that the country needs better ways to predict and respond to dangerous weather events. They also wanted to learn more about the connection between climate change and severe weather events like this one.
Scientists are still debating whether or not human activities such as burning fossil fuels change the number and severity of extreme weather events. However, they do agree that climate change is real and that we need to take action before it's too late.
In conclusion, the effects of the Great Storm of 1987 include $1 billion in damage and 18 deaths throughout the UK.
On October 15, 1987, the Great Storm of 1987 began. The storm rapidly intensified and reached maximum winds of 230 mph (370 km/hr) while centered about 50 miles (80 km) south of Nantucket, Massachusetts. It quickly moved northeast toward Cape Cod and then across Maine, causing extensive damage and at least 16 deaths.
The name "Great" is used to describe large hurricanes or tropical storms that cause significant damage as they move over land. These types of storms are not always called great storms. For example, Hurricane Alicia in 2001 was not called a great storm but rather a powerful one.
This storm was the largest to hit the New England region in more than 100 years. It caused more than $60 million in damages and 16 deaths. This makes it the most deadly storm to hit New England since the Galveston Hurricane of 1900.
This storm has been credited with causing the extinction of several species of birds that were trapped by the high winds and rain while seeking safe ground.
It's important to note that not all strong hurricanes or tropical storms that reach the mainland United States are great storms.
In addition to the loss of life, the floods caused extensive damage to people's homes and businesses, as well as destroying significant tracts of agriculture. Following the storm surge of 1953, the UK government invested much more in upgraded marine defenses, such as the Thames Barrier, and effective warning systems. Today, if there is a risk of floodwater reaching high levels, residents are advised to go to higher ground or to move to a safe place. In some cases, entire villages have been evacuated because of flooding caused by heavy rainfall.
The storm surge also had an impact on the country's climate. Before the storm surge, Britain experienced relatively few tropical storms or hurricanes, but since then, it has become one of the most active countries in the world in terms of hurricane activity. In addition, after the storm surge, sea levels around Great Britain rose by about 20 centimeters (8 inches), which contributed to the extinction of many species of calcified marine fossils that were previously used to estimate past changes in our climate.
Finally, the storm surge led to major changes for the British fishing industry. Before the storm surge, fish was one of the main foods imported into the UK; since then, imports have dominated the market and fish sales have declined dramatically.
In conclusion, the great storm of 1953 not only caused huge damage to Britain but also changed its society and economy forever.