Category: Disaster Response
  • Reflecting on Hurricane Agnes 50 Years Later

    Half a century ago, in late June 1972, one of the most devasting and historic hurricanes the United States had experienced formed in the Gulf of Mexico. Hurricane Agnes made landfall in Florida as a Category 1 storm. It was downgraded as it traveled north and was a tropical storm when it made another landfall in New York and merged with a non-tropical storm system over Pennsylvania, causing significant and widespread damage throughout the Mid-Atlantic. Rainfall from Agnes caused catastrophic inland flooding, the geographic scale of which had not been seen in decades. Tragically, 128 people lost their lives across eight states, with the states hardest hit being Pennsylvania, New York, Maryland and Virginia. Across the eastern United States, more than 362,000 people were forced to evacuate their homes due to the flooding, including 222,000 in Pennsylvania alone.