Hurricane Hattie in October 1961
Hattie formed inside the Caribbean Sea and traveled north towards Cuba. Then, unfortunately for Belize, turned west and tracked directly into Belize City. Hattie’s eye had winds of 115 miles per hour with gusts estimated at 200 miles per hour. The eye passed between Belize City and Dangriga causing 307 deaths in Belize City alone. It was this hurricane that resulted in George Price, and the People’s United Party (PUP) to relocate their Capital City from Belize City to the safer location of Belmopan. Stann Creek was completely destroyed. Following the hurricane, a village was built on the outskirts of Belize City and named Hattieville.
I still remember Hurricane Hattie in Dangriga,at 5 year old,it's an experience I'll never forget.
I was a student at Belize City at the time and it was one of the most frightening experience of my life, one of the things that i vividly recall was seeing the late Hon. George Cadle Price resplendent in full khaki his mode of dress at the time before the guyabera and rubber boots touring the city the morning after the storm wading through the water and debris with a look of determination on his face, perhaps that was the time the idea of Belmopan was conceived.
The communities of Silk Grass and Georgetown were also established inland due to Hattie's wrath.
Remember the curfew, there was still discipline in Belize, i wonder what would happen now, knowing the situation, i guess many would risk getting shot.
I rememba makin fun of dem on Soudern Foreshore d days afta Hattie. we wud run in and out of Uncle Jim's alley wen we saw dem coming lukin so serious. We stayed at my uncle's home jus afta d storm. My family lost our home at Palm Lane during the hurricane.
I can also rememba d looting at Brodies.
Photograph courtesy Capital Newspost, The British Army Magazine courtesy of Jim Titheridge
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