2004 Atlantic hurricane season
First system formed July 31, 2004
Last system dissipated December 3, 2004
Strongest storm Ivan - 910 mbar, 165 mph (1-minute sustained)
Total depressions 16
Total storms 15
Hurricanes 9
Major hurricanes 6
ACE index 227
Total fatalities 3,171 direct, 97 indirect
Total damage $57.2 Billion (2004 USD)
The 2004 Atlantic hurricane season was an above average season, and a destructive season. This season featured a total of 16 tropical cyclones, 15 named storms, 9 hurricanes, and 6 major hurricanes. This season was the most expensive season, until 2005. The strongest storm and costliest storm was Category 5 Hurricane Ivan, a Cape Verde-type hurricane that caused $23.3 Billion USD in damage.



Hurricane Alex

Category 3 hurricane (SSHWS)
Hurricane Alex 04 aug 2004 1500Z.jpg Alex 2004 track.png
Duration July 31 – August 6
Peak intensity 120 mph (195 km/h) (1-min)  957 mbar (hPa)

Alex brought category 1 hurricane conditions to the North Carolina Outer Banks as its center passed just offshore, and later strengthened to a category 3 hurricane while near 38ΕN latitude. Only one other hurricane (Ellen of 1973) reached major hurricane status farther north than Alex. [1]

Tropical Storm Bonnie

Tropical storm (SSHWS)
TS Bonnie 2004.jpg Bonnie 2004 track.png
Duration August 3 – August 13
Peak intensity 65 mph (100 km/h) (1-min)  1001 mbar (hPa)

Tropical Storm Bonnie made landfall in the vicinity of St. Vincent Island, Florida as a weak tropical storm.[2]

Hurricane Charley

Category 4 hurricane (SSHWS)
Hurricane Charley 2004.jpg Charley 2004 track.png
Duration September 9 – September 14
Peak intensity 150 mph (240 km/h) (1-min)  941 mbar (hPa)

Hurricane Charley strengthened rapidly just before striking the southwestern coast of Florida as a Category 4 hurricane on the Saffir-Simpson Hurricane Scale. Charley was the strongest hurricane to hit the United States since Andrew in 1992 and, although small in size, it caused catastrophic wind damage in Charlotte County, Florida. Serious damage occurred well inland over the Florida peninsula.[3]

Hurricane Danielle

Category 2 hurricane (SSHWS)
Hurricane Danielle 16 aug 2004 1815Z.jpg Danielle 2004 track.png
Duration September 13 – September 21
Peak intensity 110 mph (175 km/h) (1-min)  964 mbar (hPa)

Danielle was a high-end category 2 hurricane that remained over the open waters of the far eastern Atlantic Ocean without threatening land.[4]

Tropical Storm Earl

Tropical storm (SSHWS)
Tropical Storm Earl (2004).jpg Earl 2004 track.png
Duration August 13 – August 15
Peak intensity 50 mph (85 km/h) (1-min)  1009 mbar (hPa)

Earl was a short-lived tropical storm that moved quickly across the Windward Islands of the Caribbean with brief but heavy rains and winds up to 45 kt.[5]

Hurricane Frances

Category 4 hurricane (SSHWS)
Hurricane Frances 2004.jpg Frances 2004 track.png
Duration August 25 – September 8
Peak intensity 145 mph (230 km/h) (1-min)  935 mbar (hPa)

Frances was a Cape Verde-type hurricane that reached a peak intensity of category 4 on the Saffir-Simpson Hurricane Scale. It affected the Bahamas as a category 3 hurricane and the Florida east coast as a category 2 hurricane.[6]

Hurricane Gaston

Category 1 hurricane (SSHWS)
Hurricane Gaston 2004.jpg Gaston 2004 track.png
Duration August 27 – September 1
Peak intensity 75 mph (120 km/h) (1-min)  985 mbar (hPa)

Gaston was a category 1 hurricane that made landfall along the central South Carolina coast. After moving inland, Gaston produced heavy rainfall across portions of the Carolinas and Virginia. Flooding in the Richmond, Virginia metropolitan area resulted in 8 deaths.[7]

Tropical Storm Hermine

Tropical storm (SSHWS)
Hermine Aug 30 2004 1535Z.jpg Hermine 2004 track.png
Duration August 27 – August 31
Peak intensity 60 mph (95 km/h) (1-min)  1002 mbar (hPa)

Tropical Storm Hermine affected southeast Massachusetts as a weakening tropical cyclone.[8]

Hurricane Ivan

Category 5 hurricane (SSHWS)
Hurricane Ivan 13 sept 2004 1900Z.jpg Ivan 2004 track.png
Duration September 2 – September 24
Peak intensity 165 mph (270 km/h) (1-min)  910 mbar (hPa)

Ivan was a classical, long-lived Cape Verde hurricane that reached Category 5 strength three times on the Saffir-Simpson Hurricane Scale (SSHS). It was also the strongest hurricane on record that far south east of the Lesser Antilles. Ivan caused considerable damage and loss of life as it passed through the Caribbean Sea.[9]

Tropical Depression Ten

Tropical depression (SSHWS)
TD ten 2004.jpg 10-L 2004 track.png
Duration September 7 – September 9
Peak intensity 35 mph (55 km/h) (1-min)  1009 mbar (hPa)

Hurricane Jeanne

Category 3 hurricane (SSHWS)
Hurricane jeanne 2004.jpg Jeanne 2004 track.png
Duration September 13 – September 28
Peak intensity 120 mph (195 km/h) (1-min)  950 mbar (hPa)

Jeanne produced heavy rain over Guadeloupe, Puerto Rico and the Dominican Republic and caused an estimated 3000 or more deaths in Haiti, from torrential rainfall flooding. Finally, Jeanne hit the northern Bahamas and then the central Florida east coast as a category three hurricane.[10]

Hurricane Karl

Category 4 hurricane (SSHWS)
Karl Sept 19 2004 1340Z.jpg Karl 2004 track.png
Duration September 16 – September 24
Peak intensity 145 mph (230 km/h) (1-min)  938 mbar (hPa)

Karl was a category 4 hurricane on the Saffir-Simpson Hurricane Scale that traveled across the open central North Atlantic.[11]

Hurricane Lisa

Category 1 hurricane (SSHWS)
Hurricane Lisa 02 oct 2004 1300Z.jpg Lisa 2004 track.png
Duration September 19 – October 3
Peak intensity 75 mph (120 km/h) (1-min)  987 mbar (hPa)

Lisa was a long-lived tropical cyclone that reached hurricane strength north of 40Ε latitude.[12]

Tropical Storm Matthew

Tropical storm (SSHWS)
Tropical Storm Matthew (2004).jpg Matthew 2004 track.png
Duration October 8 – October 10
Peak intensity 45 mph (75 km/h) (1-min)  997 mbar (hPa)

Matthew made landfall on the Louisiana coast as a tropical storm with 35 kt winds.[13]

Subtropical Storm Nicole

Subtropical storm (SSHWS)
STS Nicole 10 oct 2004 1530Z.jpg Nicole 2004 track.png
Duration October 10 – October 11
Peak intensity 50 mph (85 km/h) (1-min)  986 mbar (hPa)

Nicole was a short-lived subtropical storm that passed near Bermuda.[14]

Tropical Storm Otto

Tropical storm (SSHWS)
Tropical Storm Otto 2004.jpg Otto 2004 track.png
Duration November 29 – December 3
Peak intensity 50 mph (85 km/h) (1-min)  995 mbar (hPa)

Otto was a tropical storm that originated from a mid-latitude baroclinic system. The cyclone remained over the open Atlantic Ocean about midway between Bermuda and the Azores Islands.[15]

Storm names

  • Alex
  • Bonnie
  • Charley
  • Danielle
  • Earl
  • Frances
  • Gaston
  • Hermine
  • Ivan
  • Jeanne
  • Karl
  • Lisa
  • Matthew
  • Nicole
  • Otto
  • Paula (unused)
  • Richard (unused)
  • Shary (unused)
  • Tomas (unused)
  • Virginie (unused)
  • Walter (unused)


In Spring 2005, it was announced the World Meteorological Organization had retired the names, Charley, Frances, Ivan, and Jeanne, for the damage and deaths caused by the storms. They were replaced with, Colin, Fiona, Igor, and Julia for the 2010 Atlantic hurricane season.