How does Hurricane Isaac compare to Katrina?

August 28, 2012 - 9:36 PM

NEW ORLEANS (AP) — Hurricane Isaac hit Louisiana's southeast coast Tuesday evening, the eve of the 7-year anniversary of Hurricane Katrina's arrival. The timing is drawing comparisons to the storm that devastated the region and killed hundreds in 2005. But how does Hurricane Isaac compare to Katrina? Here's a comparison of the two storms.

MAXIMUM SUSTAINED WINDS

Katrina: Hurricane Katrina made landfall seven years ago as a Category 3 storm with maximum sustained winds near 125 mph.

Isaac: A Category 1 storm, Isaac had maximum sustained winds near 80 mph as it came ashore in southeast Louisiana Tuesday evening.

SIZE

Katrina: Katrina was a large storm with hurricane force winds extending outward up to 125 miles from its center.

Isaac: Isaac has been much less organized with a less-defined eye. As it neared Louisiana's coast, Isaac's hurricane force winds extend outward only about 60 miles from its center.

STORM SURGE

Katrina: The 2005 storm brought devastating storm surge of 15 to 20 feet as it came onto land.

Isaac: The worst of Isaac's storm surge is expected to be 6 to 12 feet.

EVACUATIONS

Katrina: Evacuation orders were issued for millions around the region — including the city of New Orleans — ahead of Hurricane Katrina. Many did not heed the evacuation order and later had to be rescued from flooded homes.

Isaac: As the storm closed in, tens of thousands were told to evacuate. Some decided to leave, while others have decided to hunker down and ride out the relatively weaker storm.