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Fall Storm and High Lake Levels Spell Disaster Around the Great Lakes, 1973

By: Strommen, N.D.


Storms moving toward the great lakes basin are always of concern to ships operating in these inland waters. Fall is a period of maximum turbulence and storms occurring in the fall take a heavy toll on shipping. On November 13-14, 1972 rising waters forced over 15,000 persons to flee from their homes and caused unharvested fields to be flooded. Details are given on the history of the storm. Water levels reached record levels. A graph of the water level as recorded by the lake survey gage at Toledo is shown. The highest level recorded there was 575.98 ft above the international great lakes datum at 1500, November 14, or 88.6 in. Above the 1955 low water datum for lake Erie. On Saginaw bay, the limits of the water level gage at Essexville were exceeded but the coast guard reported the highest water at the mouth of the Saginaw River as 68 in. Above datum. These record levels topped by the pounding of 8- to 12-ft waves forced the evacuation of over 15,000 persons. Total losses were estimated at $7.2 million in Michigan and $22 million in Ohio. (NOAA)

RECORD ID: 7500377

F&G CODE: 02h

Strommen, N.D., Fall Storm and High Lake Levels Spell Disaster Around the Great Lakes: Mariners Weather Log; Vol 17, NO 2, P 66-69, March 1973. 6 Fig.

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