Global Hazards - Annual 1998

Please note: Material provided in this report is chosen subjectively and included at the discretion of the National Climatic Data Center (NCDC). The ability to report on a given event is limited by the amount of information available to NCDC at the time of publication. Inclusion of a particular event does not constitute a greater importance in comparison with an event that has not been incorporated into the discussion. Data included in this report are preliminary unless otherwise stated. Links to supporting information are valid at the time of publication, but they are not maintained or changed after publication.

Hurricane Mitch
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Top of Page Introduction

1998 was a year which featured numerous extreme climatic events. NCDC issued eighteen special reports covering these events during 1998--see below for links to these reports. There were also at least six weather related disasters in the U.S. that reached or exceeded the billion dollar mark in terms of direct and indirect damages/costs. These six events-- northeast ice storm, southeast severe weather and tornadoes, southern drought/heat wave, Texas flooding, Hurricane Bonnie, and Hurricane Georges--caused over $17 billion in damages and approximately 400 fatalities in the U.S. (including Puerto Rico).

The U.S. has sustained 40 weather-related disasters over the past 20 years in which overall damages and costs reached or exceeded $1 billion. 34 of these disasters occurred during the 1988-1999 period with total damages/costs exceeding $170 billion. The Billion Dollar U.S. Weather Disasters, 1980-1999 report can be accessed using this link or in the list below.

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Top of Page Special Summaries of Extreme Events During 1998

Top Weather and Climate Stories of 1998">
Billion Dollar U.S. Weather Disasters, 1980-1999
Climatic Extremes of the Summer of 1998 (Tech Report, PDF File)
Mitch: The Deadliest Atlantic Hurricane Since 1780
Typhoons and Flooding in Philippines--September-October 1998 (brief report, data)
Georges Pummels Caribbean--September 1998
Bonnie Buffets North Carolina--August 1998
Severe Flooding in North and South Korea--July-August 1998 (brief report, data)
Monsoonal Flooding in India and Bangladesh--July-September 1998 (brief report, data)
Heat and Precipitation Extremes--Summer 1998
Weather Extremes--Summer 1998
Flooding in China--Summer 1998
Florida Wildfires--June 1998
El Nino Induced Flooding in South America--January-April 1998 (brief report, data)
Wet Southeast and Gulf Coast (El Nino Event)
California Flooding and Florida Tornadoes--February 1998
Eastern U.S. Flooding and Ice Storm--January 1998
The El Nino Winter of '97-'98 (Tech Report) Online Store Icon
El Nino/La Nina--Reports and Data
1998 Wildfires Throughout the World

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Top of Page Storm Events

The new Storm Events files are a WWW subset of the popular NCDC publication "Storm Data". This database contains natural hazard damages chronologically by state and time for a given month. The user can select any state or states, and any or all of the 15 weather-related damage categories (drought, hail, fog, t-storm, high winds, etc), along with any month beginning with January 1996, and get a list of the damage reports associated with the event.

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Top of Page Selected U.S. City Extremes

The Selected U.S. City Extremes give a listing of new records that were set chronologically across the U.S. during 1998.

Citing This Report

NOAA National Centers for Environmental Information, State of the Climate: Global Hazards for Annual 1998, published online January 1999, retrieved on July 22, 2017 from