The 1970 cyclone known as the Bhola killed up to 500,000 people in the Bay of Bengal region, making it the deadliest storm surge ever recorded. Tropical cyclone surges are especially susceptible to the low-lying Bay of Bengal coast.
Cyclone Nargis killed more than 138,000 people in Myanmar in May 2008, making it the deadliest storm surge of the 21st century. The next century’s deadliest storm was Typhoon Yolanda, which killed over 6,000 people in the central Philippines in 2013 and caused an estimated $14 billion in economic losses.
A devastating surge washed ashore during the 1900 Galveston hurricane, a Category 4 storm that struck Galveston, Texas; It was the deadliest natural disaster to ever hit the United States, with between 6,000 and 12,000 deaths.
The Cyclone Mahina of 1899 produced the highest storm tide ever recorded, reaching almost 44 feet (13.41 meters) at Bathurst Bay, Australia. However, research published in 2000 found that the steep coastal topography likely caused most of this to be wave run-up.
Computer modeling required an intensity of 880 millibars (26 inHg), which is the same intensity as the lowest recorded pressure from the storm, to produce the recorded storm surge. However, a significant portion of this storm surge was probably caused by Mahina’s extreme intensity.