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Hurricanes Henriette and Felix Set a Record
09.05.07
 
Never before have forecasters seen Atlantic and eastern Pacific hurricanes make landfall on the same day until September 2007.

The Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer instrument on NASA's Aqua satellite captured images of the two hurricanes as they were near Central America


+ High resolution image

The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration's National Hurricane Center noted that this has never happened since they started keeping records in 1949.

At the time of Felix's landfall in extreme northeastern Nicaragua on Tuesday, Sept. 4 at 8:00 a.m. EDT (5:00 a.m. PDT), he was deemed a "potentially catastrophic Category 5 hurricane." Six hours later, Henriette made landfall as a Category 1 hurricane with sustained winds of 85 mph (140 km/hour) and higher gusts. At 2:00 p.m. EDT (1100 a.m. PDT) Tuesday, Sept. 4, the National Hurricane Center noted in its advisory: "The eyewall of Henriette is nearing the southern tip of the Baja Peninsula."

The Moderate-Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer (MODIS) instrument on NASA’s Aqua satellite captured images of the two hurricanes as they were near Central America: The image is a combination of two images collected in two consecutive orbits of NASA's Aqua satellite around the globe. The breaks in coverage between the orbits appear in gray.

The right image of Hurricane Felix was created from data gathered at 2:30 p.m. EDT (18:30 UTC) on Sept. 3 when the storm was headed toward Nicaragua. The next day, Felix made landfall a Category 5 storm, with sustained winds of 160 mph. Felix then became the second Category 5 Atlantic storm that made landfall in Central America. Dean hit Mexico's Yucatan Peninsula on Aug. 21.

The left image of Hurricane Henriette was created from data gathered at 5:10 p.m. EDT (21:10 UTC). At that time, Henriette was moving northward along the western Mexican coast. On Sept. 4, she became the first land-falling eastern Pacific hurricane of the 2007 hurricane season.

Felix and Henriette have forever secured their place in the records of hurricane history for being the only storms from the Atlantic and eastern Pacific oceans to make landfall on the same day -- and in the same region of the globe! Image Credit: Jeff Schmaltz, MODIS Rapid Response Team, NASA GSFC

 
 
Rob Gutro
Goddard Space Flight Center