Wednesday, August 29, 2012

Isaac's 11.02-foot surge moves it into fifth place all-time at Shell Beach, LA

Hurricane Isaac's storm surge reached 11.02 feet at 11:36PM CDT this evening at Shell Beach, LA. Water levels were rising during the afternoon and evening as strong winds howled out of the north-northeast and northeast. In the first hours of Wednesday, water levels at Shell Beach dropped slightly, but remained close to 11 feet.

SCIPP/ SURGEDAT has identified peak surge levels for 15 tropical cyclones at Shell Beach. Isaac's 11.02-foot surge moved it into fifth place all time, surpassing water levels produced by Flossy (1956), Gustav (2008), Betsy (1965) and Ike (2008). Isaac now joins some noteworthy company for surge events in this area, and the maximum level during Isaac is just a fraction of an inch lower than Camille's surge height in this area.

Top 10 surge heights for Shell Beach, LA in the SURGEDAT database:

Rank    Storm        Year    Max Water Level (ft)
1          Katrina      2005   18.7 (storm surge)
2          Unnamed   1915   11.6 (storm tide)
3          Unnamed   1947   11.2 (storm tide)
4          Camille      1969   11.06 (storm tide)
5          Isaac           2012  11.02 (storm surge)
6          Flossy         1956  10.9 (storm tide)
7          Gustav        2008   9.53 (storm surge)
8          Betsy          1965   9.34  (storm tide)
9          Ike              2008   7.51 (storm surge)
10        Unnamed    1901   6.7  (storm tide)