31 Images of the Hurricane Andrew Destruction

Sept. 1, 1992, Janny Vancedarfield sits in front of the debris that was once his house in Florida City, Fla. Vancedarfield lived in this house with six other family members before it was destroyed by Hurricane Andrew in September 1992. Two decades later, Homestead and Florida City have doubled in size into a demographically different community, better prepared to deal with hurricanes. AP Photo/Lynne Sladky

Hurricane Andrew was a Category 5 Atlantic hurricane that struck South Florida in August 1992. Andrew caused major damage in the Bahamas and Louisiana as well, but it was the most destructive hurricane in Florida’s history.

Andrew passed directly through Homestead, Florida and completely disseminated several blocks of houses, stripping them down to their foundations. In Miami-Dade County, the fierce winds destroyed 25,500 houses and damaged more than 101,000 others. The strongest winds produced by Hurricane Andrew were extended gusts of 175 mph. The hurricane produced almost 14 inches of rainfall in western Miami-Dade County.

President George H.W. Bush initially proposed a $7.1 billion aid package to provide disaster benefits, small-business loans, agricultural recovery, food stamps, and public housing for victims. The House of Representatives included aid to victims of Hurricane Iniki in Hawaii and Typhoon Omar in Guam and the package was increased to $11.1  billion with Florida receiving $9 billion through the disaster relief bill.

As many as 1.4 million people lost power at the height of the storm. In the Everglades, 70,000 acres of trees were drowned and invasive Burmese pythons began inhabiting the region after a nearby facility housing them was destroyed.

The hurricane left 65 people dead and created $26.5 billion ($46.07 billion) in damage across its path.

MIAMI, FL – AUGUST 26: A sign in front of a house in the Cutler Ridge area damaged by Hurricane Andrew reads ‘We will survive’ 26 August 1992. Hurricane Andrew left more than 50,000 people homeless and caused billions of dollars of damage. ANDREW ITKOFF/AFP/Getty Images
MIAMI, FL – AUGUST 25: A resident (bottom right) looks out of his apartment 25 August 1992 that had its walls blown away by Hurricane Andrew. About 50,000 Dade county residents are without their homes due to Hurricane Andrew, which struck the area 24 August 1992. ROBERT SULLIVAN/AFP/Getty Images
Some of the extensive Damage to homes in Miami. Huffington Post
FLORIDA CITY, UNITED STATES: Mexican immigrants who lost their homes to Hurricane Andrew stand outside their tents 06 September 1992 as repairmen work on damaged roofs at Centro Campesino in Florida. Many migrant workers, some who do not have green cards, are afraid to come to the camp to seek help. ROBERT SULLIVAN/AFP/Getty Images
HOMESTEAD, FL – SEPTEMBER 4: Hurricane Andrew victim Sonda Marshall (R) of Homestead, Florida, applies makeup 04 September 1992. Marshall and her son, Leo (L), were left homeless by the storm and are now living in the Homestead tent city. ANDREW ITKOFF/AFP/Getty Images
AUGUST 25: A looter carries goods from a grocery store in the Cutler Ridge area 25 August 1992 as sporadic looting continues following the devastation of Hurricane Andrew. Local officials have instituted a dusk-to-dawn curfew for Dade County to curb looting. Huffington Post
HOMESTEAD, FL – AUGUST 25: Susanne Miller (R) and Cheryl Winchester of Homestead clear the rubble from their pet supply store in Homestead, Florida 25 August 1992 as Floridians began cleaning up after Hurricane Andrew. Twelve people were killed by the storm, which left more than 50,000 homeless. BOB PEARSON/AFP/Getty Images
A two by four lodged through a palm tree. Hurrican Andrew’s winds hit Florida with a speed of 165 mph. NOAA Photo Library
Buildings on the Deering Estate. Still-water marks from storm surge measured at 16.5 feet. Zoohouse
National Guardsman Donald Kirby helps Hurricane Andrew victim Mary Beckford of Cutler Ridge, Florida 27 August 1992 get fresh drinking water from a tanker brought in for disaster relief. AFP PHOTO: Andrew ITKOFF
The force of the storm left entire towns decimated. Hurrican Andrew left 65 people dead and cost $26.5 billion ($45.67 billion) in damages. Huffington Post
HOMESTEAD, FL – AUGUST 25: An unidentified woman grabs goods from the shelves of a convenience store 25 August 1992 as looters continued to rob stores damaged by Hurricane Andrew. Andrew is expected to hit New Orleans later 25 August. ANDREW ITKOFF/AFP/Getty Images
Homestead Air Force Base after Hurricane Andrew severely damaged the base on 27 August 1992. Bwmoll3
MIAMI, FL – AUGUST 24: Wrecked boats sit on the sea wall 24 August 1992 at the docks at Dinner Key in the Coconut Grove area of the city after Hurricane Andrew passed through southern Florida. Andrew was the strongest hurricane to hit southern Florida in 40 years. ROBERT SULLIVAN/AFP/Getty Images
KENDALL, FL – AUGUST 24: Vidal Martinez holds his head 24 August 1992 while viewing the aftermath of Hurricane Andrew in front of what is left of his trailer at the Flowers Trailer Park, Florida. Hurricane Andrew smashed ashore before dawn 24 August devastating southern Florida. ANDY ITKOFF/AFP/Getty Images
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