Island Of Galveston
Hurricane Carla - 1961

..…Hurricane Carla made landfall between Port O’Connor and Port Lavaca on September 11, 1961. Over the Gulf of Mexico, with maximum sustained wind speeds of over 150 mph, Carla was a category 5 hurricane on the Saffir-Simpson scale of hurricane intensity. When the "eye" of Hurricane Carla made landfall early in the morning of the 11th, the intensity had dropped off but the storm was still packing winds of 120 mph in areas from Port O’Connor up the coast to Galveston. The "eye" of the storm came within 65 miles to the east of Corpus Christi.Galveston sat on the 'dirty' side of the storm, bearing the brunt of the storm's energy from the warm Gulf waters.
..…The wind and storm surge, not the rain, became the major weather factor for Galveston. Preliminary wind reports from Galveston showed 88 mph winds. Peak wind gusts were estimated at 150 mph in Victoria and 170 mph at Port Lavaca. A lot of the damage in Galveston was not caused directly by the hurricane, but rather by tornadoes that were spun off by the storm.
..…Galveston Airport recorded 16.49" of rain in a four-day period. With the intense wind, storm surge became a major problem. In some areas from Port Aransas to Sabine Pass, tides were 10 feet above normal…the highest levels since the storm of 1919.
..…When it was all said and done, 43 people lost their lives to Hurricane Carla. 31 in the state of Texas. Many more lives could have been lost were it not for the call for early evacuations and the emergency services.

Seawall storm surge prior to the actual landfall of the storm.

Damage after the storm. View looking North at damage from tornadoes.

Missile carrier washed up on the coast off the seawall.

Storm damage


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Last update for this page on May 8, 2005