Man's physical universe



per hour. A hurricane at Barbados carried a 400-pound piece of lead

1680 feet. The rainfall in tropical cyclones is nearly always heavy,

and frequently torrential. One tropical storm may bring enough water

so that it would be waist-deep on the level if it did not run off. The

Galveston flood of September 8, 1900, which killed 6000 people, was

swept into the city by a hurricane. These hurricanes originate only


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Fig. 83. Sleet storm, New England, 1921. (Courtesy of the American

Telegraph and Telephone Company.)

in a few particular areas of the tropics in certain seasons of the year.

On October 7, 1737, a 40-foot storm wave destroyed 20,000 craft

at the mouth of the Hooghly River, on the Bay of Bengal, killing

300,000 people. In a similar catastrophe at the same place in 1864,

50,000 lives were lost.

Ice Storms Are Sometimes Very Serious.

Ice storms are the result of rain from a warm layer of air falling onto

ground which has been cooled below the freezing-point. Usually a

layer of cold air is just above the ground. The warm layer of air above

is the result of a cold mass of air pushing under a warm layer, or it may

be produced by a warm layer pushing over a cold layer of air.

The Great New England Ice Storm of November 26, 1921, followed

days of clear, cold weather that had thoroughly chilled the ground.

The storm set in with snow on Saturday, but it soon changed to rain

that froze to ice over all the surfaces it reached. On Sunday the thermometer

fell to 25° F., and a steady rain Sunday night covered everything

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