Reconstruction of Prehistoric Landfall Frequencies of Catast

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Reconstruction of Prehistoric Landfall Frequencies of Catastrophic Hurricanes in Northwestern Florida from Lake Sediment Records ... n_2000.pdf

It is a study from 1998.

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No catastrophic hurricane of category 4 or 5 intensity has
made landfall in the Western Lake area during the last 130 yr
of documentary record, but the sediment stratigraphic data
suggest that 12 such hurricanes directly struck Western Lake
during the past 3400 yr, yielding a long-term frequency of
approximately one hurricane every 280 yr. Therefore, the Florida
Panhandle on average has a 0.36% probability of being
struck by a catastrophic hurricane of category 4 or 5 intensity
in any particular year.

The Western Lake data demonstrate that, like other paleoclimatic proxy
records that reveal “warm climate surprises” (Overpeck, 1996),
paleohurricane records from the past century or even the past
millennium are not long enough to capture the full range of
variability of catastrophic hurricane activities inherent in the
Holocene climatic regime. If future climatic changes, whether
or not related to the anticipated greenhouse warming, lead to a
return of a “hyperactive” hurricane regime characteristic of the
first millennium A.D., then the northeastern Gulf Coast is
expected to experience a dramatic increase in the frequency of
strikes by catastrophic hurricanes.
Hurricane Michael was a rare hurricane as struck as a Category 4/5 on the Florida Panhandle. Based on lake sediment samples, there have been 12 Category 4 or 5 hurricanes in the past 3,400 years. A Category 4 or 5 hurricane strikes the Florida Panhandle about every 280 years on average.
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