National Weather Service United States Department of Commerce

...2019 marks the 30th Anniversary of Hurricane Hugo...


Thirty years ago around midnight on September 22, Hurricane Hugo made landfall just north of Charleston, South Carolina at Sullivan's Island as a Category 4 storm with estimated maximum winds near 140 mph and a minimum central pressure of 934 millibars (27.58 inches of Hg). Hugo produced tremendous wind and storm surge damage along the coast and hurricane force wind gusts several hundred miles inland into western North Carolina. The highest storm tide heights ever recorded along the U.S. East Coast (~20 feet above MSL) occurred around Bull's Bay at Cape Romain! At the time, Hugo was the nation's costliest hurricane on record in terms of damages (~$7 billion). Unfortunately, 49 deaths were directly attributed to the storm, 26 of which occurred in the U.S., Puerto Rico, and the U.S. Virgin Islands. For additional information about the storm, check out our Hurricane Hugo Event Review.

Infrared Satellite Image of Hurricane Hugo

GOES-7 Infrared Satellite Loop of Hugo (September 9-25, 1989)

[Click to open in a new window]


Story Map (Track, Impacts)

[Courtesy of NOAA's Office for Coastal Management - Click to open in a new window] 

Interactive Map of Hugo's track, impacts and storm surge


Video Series 

[Produced in 2014 for the 25th Anniversary commemoration - Click on each video to open in a new window]




Hugo Video Series



Before the Storm

Hugo Video Series



During the Storm

Hugo Video Series


After the Storm

Hugo Video Series


Looking Ahead

Hugo Video Series







Additional Information