Hurricane Katrina resulted in the death of an estimated 1,836 people along the Gulf Coast of the United States, as well as causing approximately $125 billion in economic damage. New Orleans is reported to have had the highest death toll due to the storm.
Hurricane Katrina was a Category 5 hurricane at its peak. Through its journey, it made landfall on three separate occasions. The first recorded landfall was made in the areas between Hallandale Beach and North Miami Beach, Fla., as a Category 1 storm. After its initial landfall, the storm moved onward with a westward track across the Gulf of Mexico where the warm waters fed the storm and helped it to strengthen before making its second landfall. At a Category 4 hurricane status, Hurricane Katrina made its second landfall in Plaquemines Parish, La., on Aug. 29, 2005, with recorded wind gusts of 100 mph. The third and final landfall was made on the Louisiana-Mississippi border with wind speeds upward of 125 mph and reported gusts up to 190 miles from the eye of the storm.
These high wind speeds caused significant damage along the levees in the New Orleans area, causing a major breech in them and attributing to the devastating flooding area wide. Major buildings, bridges roadways and homes were destroyed by the storm. As of 2014, some areas are still recovering.