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Facts for Features
CB08-FFSE.02
May 28, 2008

*Special Edition*
2008 Hurricane Season Begins

The north Atlantic hurricane season begins June 1 and lasts through November. The U.S. Census Bureau produces timely local data that are critical to emergency planning, preparedness and recovery efforts. This edition of Facts for Features spotlights the number of people living in areas that could be most affected by these acts of nature.

In Harm's Way

35.3 million

Estimated July 1, 2007, population most threatened by Atlantic hurricanes: the coastal portion of the states stretching from North Carolina to Texas. Twelve percent of the nation's population lived in these areas.
Source: Population Estimates <http://www.census.gov/popest/estimates.html>

10.2 million

The 1950 coastal population of the states stretching from North Carolina to Texas. Seven percent of the nation's population lived in these areas.
Source: 1950 Decennial Census <http://www.census.gov/population/www/censusdata/cencounts/>

25.1 million

Number of people added to the Atlantic and Gulf coastal areas from North Carolina to Texas between 1950 and 2007. Florida alone was responsible for the bulk of this increase (just over 15 million).
Source: Population Estimates <http://www.census.gov/popest/estimates.html> and 1950 Decennial Census <http://www.census.gov/population/www/censusdata/cencounts/>

247%

Percentage growth of the coastal population of the states stretching from North Carolina to Texas between 1950 and 2007.
Source: Population Estimates <http://www.census.gov/popest/estimates.html> and 1950 Decennial Census <http://www.census.gov/population/www/censusdata/cencounts/>

180,155

Collective land area, in square miles, of the coastal areas from North Carolina to Texas.
Source: <http://www.census.gov/geo/www/gazetteer/places2k.html>

3

The number of the 20 most populous metro areas from 2006 to 2007 that were within Atlantic or Gulf coastal areas from North Carolina to Texas. These areas are Houston-Baytown-Sugar Land, Texas (sixth); Miami-Fort Lauderdale-Miami Beach, Fla. (seventh), and Tampa-St. Petersburg-Clearwater, Fla. (19th).
Source: <http://www.census.gov/newsroom/releases/archives/population/cb08-49.html>

3

The number of the 10 fastest growing metro areas in 2007 that were within Atlantic or Gulf coastal areas from North Carolina to Texas. These were Palm Coast, Fla. (first), Myrtle Beach-Conway-North Myrtle Beach, S.C. (sixth), New Orleans-Metarie-Kenner, La. (eighth).
Source: <http://www.census.gov/newsroom/releases/xls/cb08-49_table2.xls>

6

The number of hurricanes during the 2007 Atlantic hurricane season.
Source: <http://www.nhc.noaa.gov/2007atlan.shtml>

Arthur

The name of the first Atlantic storm of 2008. The second Atlantic/Gulf of Mexico/Caribbean storm will be named Bertha.
Source: <http://www.srh.weather.gov/tropicalwx/awareness/tc101.htm>

About 50 to 100

Number of people killed by hurricanes striking the U.S. coastline in an average three-year period.
Source: <http://www.noaa.gov>

Florida

17.8 million

Estimated 2007 coastal population of Florida, accounting for half of the coastal population of the states stretching from North Carolina (coastal population 2.1 million) to Texas (coastal population 7.9 million). Among the Sunshine State's coastal population, 10.6 million lived along the Atlantic and 7.2 million along the Gulf.
Source: Population Estimates <http://www.census.gov/popest/estimates.html>

0.8%

Percentage growth of Florida's coastal population between 2006 and 2007.
Source: Population Estimates <http://www.census.gov/popest/estimates.html>

354 people per square mile

The 2007 population density of Florida's coastal areas. The Sunshine State leads the entire area between North Carolina and Texas in coastal population density.
Source: <http://www.census.gov/geo/www/gazetteer/places2k.html> and <http://www.census.gov/popest/estimates.html>

Hurricanes Past

1950

The year the Weather Bureau officially began naming hurricanes.
Source: <http://www.aoml.noaa.gov/hrd/tcfaq/J6.html>

452,170

Estimated population of New Orleans on July 1, 2005 -- about two months before Hurricane Katrina struck.
Source: <http://www.census.gov/newsroom/releases/archives/population/cb07-42.html>

239,124

Estimated population of New Orleans on July 1, 2007 -- two years after Hurricane Katrina struck. The parish's population increased 13.8 percent from a year earlier when it was 210,198.
Source: <http://www.census.gov/newsroom/releases/xls/cb08-47_table1.xls>

342,973

Population of Charleston County, S.C., in 2007. The county was devastated by Hurricane Hugo in 1989, when its population was 295,000, but has rebounded since.
Source: <http://www.census.gov/newsroom/releases/archives/population/cb08-47.html>

29,431

The population of Homestead, Fla., near the point of landfall of Hurricane Andrew in 1992. In 2006, the population of Homestead was 53,767.
Source: <http://www.census.gov/popest/archives/1990s/su-99-07/SU-99-7_FL.txt> and
<http://www.census.gov/popest/cities/tables/SUB-EST2006-04-12.xls>

38,000

Population of Galveston, Texas, at the time of the city's "Great Storm" on Sept. 8, 1900, that killed more than 8,000 people. At that time, Galveston, Dallas and Houston had similar populations. In 2006, the population of Galveston was 57,523, nowhere near that of Dallas (1,232,940) and Houston (2,144,491).
Source: <http://www.census.gov/population/www/techpap.html> and
<http://www.census.gov/newsroom/releases/archives/population/cb07-91.html>

Note: Coastal counties include those with at least 15 percent of their total land area within the nation's coastal watershed.
Source: <http://www.census.gov/geo/landview/lv6help/coastal_cty.pdf>

"Special Editions" of the U.S. Census Bureau's Facts for Features are issued to provide background information for lesser-known observances, anniversaries of historic events and other timely topics in the news.


Editor’s note: The preceding data were collected from a variety of sources and may be subject to sampling variability and other sources of error. Facts for Features are customarily released about two months before an observance in order to accommodate magazine production timelines. Questions or comments should be directed to the Census Bureau’s Public Information Office: telephone: 301-763-3030; fax: 301-763-3762; or e-mail: <PIO@census.gov>.

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Source: U.S. Census Bureau | Public Information Office | PIO@census.gov | Last Revised: February 10, 2014