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St. Petersburg Coastal and Marine Science Center > Coastal Change Hazards: Hurricanes and Extreme Storms > Hurricane Katrina

Coastal Change Hazards: Hurricanes and Extreme Storms

Mainland Mississippi

Hurricane Katrina

Before and After Photo Comparisons: Mainland Mississippi

The mainland shoreline of Mississippi, located in the right-front quadrant of Hurricane Katrina, experienced one of the greatest storm surges in U.S. history. Most of this coastline stretching from Waveland through Pascagoula suffered extensive damage up to several kilometers inland from the coast. The photo pairs below show the complete destruction of the gulf-front homes and businesses in Gulfport, Biloxi, Waveland, and Bay St. Louis. In each pair the top image was acquired by the University of New Orleans in September 1998 and the bottom image was acquired by the USGS on August 31, 2005, two days after Hurricane Katrina. Additional post-Katrina images are available on the Post-Storm Oblique Aerial Photography page.

Photo showing locations of pre-and post-storm photo sets
Photo showing locations of pre-and post-storm photo sets. Scroll down or click on the location numbers on the photo above to view the pre- and post-storm photo sets.

before and after photos showing detroyed pier house and antebellum house
Location 1: In the top image, taken in 1998, notice the pier, pier house, and the antebellum house. The bottom image shows the same location on August 31, 2005, two days after Hurricane Katrina made landfall. This photo shows the complete destruction of these landmarks. [larger version]

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before and after photos showing an area where the only structure left standing is a small portion of a hotel
Location 2: In the top image, taken in 1998, notice the Deep South Motel to the left and the apartment building to the right. The bottom image shows the same location on August 31, 2005, two days after Hurricane Katrina made landfall. This photo shows that a small portion of the motel is only structure left standing in the area. [larger version]

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before and after photos showing detroyed muti-story homes
Location 3: The top image was taken off the coast of Bay St. Louis, MS in July 1998 by researchers at the University of New Orleans. In this image, notice the large multi-story houses, some of which are built on stilts to protect the homes from flooding. The bottom image shows the same location on August 31, 2005, two days after landfall of Hurricane Katrina. The storm surge, estimated to have exceeded 20 feet in Waveland, destroyed homes and left only their foundations. The trees have been denuded of all vegetation, in sharp contrast to expected levels of vegetation in late August. [larger version]

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before and after photos showing detroyed large oceanfront homes
Location 4: The top image, taken off the coast of Waveland, MS in July 1998, shows several large oceanfront homes, and thick wooded vegetation bordering the sandy beach. The bottom image shows the same location on August 31, 2005, two days after landfall of Hurricane Katrina. All of the houses have been destroyed, and the tennis court behind the house on the far right is no longer recognizable. The vegetation, which should be at its peak in August, has been stripped from the trees. [larger version]

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before and after photos showing the landward extent of damage
Location 5: The top image, taken off the coast of Waveland, MS in July 1998, shows a large rock groin extending from the beach and multiple single family homes along the coastline. The bottom image was taken on August 31, 2005, two days after landfall of Hurricane Katrina. In this image, notice the landward extent of damage, which is estimated by researchers to reach up to two kilometers from the coastline. Sand covers the oceanfront road, and the next road inland was still flooded at the time of the aerial survey. [larger version]

Location 5Location 4Location 3Location 2Location 1
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Related links:

National Hurricane Conference


St. Petersburg Coastal and Marine Science Center > Coastal Change Hazards: Hurricanes and Extreme Storms > Hurricane Katrina

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