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Dean's Fury:

Hurricane Dean was measured a Category 5 storm before landfall in Mexico. As Chris Mooney reports, it is one of ten most intense Atlantic hurricanes ever measured.

Dean was officially the most powerful hurricane that we've seen globally so far in 2007, and was by far the strongest at landfall. It was also the first Category 5 Atlantic hurricane seen in the since the record-setting Hurricane Wilma of October 2005. In fact, Dean set some records of its own. Its pressure was the ninth lowest ever measured in the Atlantic, and the third lowest at landfall. Indeed, there hasn't been a full Category 5 landfall in our part of the world since 1992's Hurricane Andrew. Dean was in all respects a terrifying storm, and we can only hope that the damage will somehow be less than expected as it tears across the peninsula and then, after crossing the Bay of Campeche, moves on to a presumed second Mexican landfall.

rarango (mail):
My favorite destination, Cozumel, was devastated 10 years ago and only recently recovering. I hope the huge ponciania tree in the town square is still standing.
8.21.2007 12:07pm
Grant Gould (mail):
"Not only are we going to the Gulf, we're going to Jamaica, Belize, we're going to Mexico and Jamaica and to Campeche, and we're going to Mexico again, BYAAAAAH!"
8.21.2007 12:28pm
Shake-N-Bake:
The Yucatan, particularly Cancun and the Riviera Maya, were just crushed by Hurricane Wilma two years ago -- it sounds like despite the stronger storm this one isn't quite as bad as it's moving relatively quickly across the peninsula. The one two years ago became almost stagnant and hung around for much longer than a typical hurricane, and was at nearly the same strength as Katrina at landfall. There was STILL large amounts excess water in areas (looked like swamps, but locals told us it's not supposed to be a swamp, it's supposed to be dry land) over a year later when we were there for our wedding. The resorts were hit very hard overall, when we were looking at places for the wedding there were a fair number that were not accepting weddings that year due to rebuilding. And the resorts are typically quite well built to withstand hurricanes, as opposed to the building in the small Mayan towns inland, so can only imagine how bad it was there.

Fortunately the speed plus the rapid weakening of the storm makes it sound like this one won't be quite as bad, even if it made landfall as a stronger storm.
8.21.2007 1:08pm
Alan K. Henderson (mail) (www):
Grant,

Here's what I blogged several days ago:
"Not only are we going to the Antilles, we're going to Puerto Rico and the Dominican Republic and Haiti and Cuba and the Caymans, and we're going to Yucatan and Texas and Louisiana. And we're going to Arkansas and Tennessee and Kentucky and Virginia, and then we're going to Washington, D.C., to tear down the White House! YEEEARRGH"
It's not too late for Hurricane Dean to make a hard right and follow the rest of that course, but that's about as likely as Howard Dean making a hard right :-)
8.22.2007 11:00am