Special Report

Before and After Photos of Some of the World's Most Disastrous Weather Events


Source: Headsillroll / Wikimedia Commons


Source: Chris Graythen / Getty Images

1. Hurricane: Katrina, New Orleans and vicinity
> Year: 2005
> Fatalities (direct or indirect): 1,833

FEMA described the storm and its subsequent flooding as “the single most catastrophic natural disaster in U.S. history,” and estimated the costs of its total damage at $108 billion.


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Source: Jonathan Wood / Getty Images

2. Flood: Lockyer Valley, Queensland, Australia
> Year: 2011 
> Fatalities: 19

Following the tragedy, the Lockyer Valley Regional Council implemented a community resettlement project, moving citizens out of potential flood zones to protect them from future flooding. Some 78% of Queensland was declared a disaster zone due to floods between December 2010 and January 2011.


Source: AbeEzekowitz / Wikimedia Commons


Source: Benjamin Krain / Getty Images

3. Tornado: Joplin, Missouri
> Year: 2011
> Fatalities: 158

At their peak, winds reached a speed of more than 200 miles an hour. About 7,000 homes and a number of institutions and businesses were destroyed.


Source: Kirkikis / Getty Images


Source: seclemens / Getty Images

4. Hurricane: Sandy, East Coast of the U.S. and the Caribbean
> Year: 2012
> Fatalities: 147

Sandy caused property damage costing approximately $50 billion, according to estimates, making it the second costliest hurricane (after Katrina) to hit the U.S. since 1900. Sandy caused cancellation of airline flights, much public transportation, Broadway shows, and trading on the New York Stock Exchange.

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