On Sept. 10, 1979, Hurricane Frederic strengthened to a Category 4 over the Central Gulf with maximum sustained winds near 132 miles per hour. The hurricane peaked at 135 miles per hour. On Aug. 29, 1979, Hurricane Fredric formed as a tropical depression over the far-eastern Atlantic.
Tides were up to 12 feet above normal level during the storm. Surge damage was reported along the 80 miles coastline from Mississippi to Florida. There was almost total property damage along the Alabama coastline between Fort Morgan and Gulf Shores, with 80 percent of the buildings completely destroyed. The causeway that linked Dauphin Island to the mainland was destroyed in many areas.