Hurricane Andrew: Original 1992 news coverage of storm that rapidly intensified, devastated Florida

This is how Channel 7 Eyewitness News covered Hurricane Andrew in August 1992

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Wednesday, September 28, 2022
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Hurricane Andrew: 1992 news coverage of storm that devastated Florida

As Hurricane Ian lashes Florida with devastating storm surge, powerful winds and torrential rains, longtime residents are looking back at other storms that have devastated the Sunshine State over the years.

Last month, on Aug. 24, Florida marked the 30th anniversary of Hurricane Andrew, a Category 5 storm that wrecked large swaths of South Florida, wiping out whole neighborhoods and causing $26.5 billion of damage, the most expensive hurricane damage amount at the time.

There are differences between Andrew and Ian, of course, including the paths each storm took, but they share one very notable thing in common: they both intensified rapidly.

In 1992, Andrew's rapid intensification took Florida by surprise. Back then, forecasting tools were far more primitive, Eric Blake, senior hurricane scientist at the National Hurricane Center, told ABC News last month, well before Ian had even formed.

"In 1992, we had nothing," Blake said, "We had statistics and persistence and forecaster intuition."

Today, meteorology experts told ABC News last month, rapid intensification is expected to occur more often.

"Because of the characteristics many modern-day cyclones display as a result of climate change and warming ocean waters, the surprise factor brought on by Andrew can be expected to occur more often in the future as storms continue to experience rapid intensification -- despite the vast advances in forecast technology," according to the ABC News article.

Channel 7 Eyewitness News dipped into its archives to review our days of coverage of Hurricane Andrew, and we present original broadcasts, just as they aired in August 1992.