The U.S. National Oceanic and Atmospheric administration — NOAA — reports the U.S. has seen 25 separate weather or climate “disasters” — events causing damage or losses exceeding $1 billion — so far this year, the highest number since the agency began tracking such events 43 years ago.

In a report issued this week, NOAA said severe thunderstorms moving through Oklahoma and other southern Plains states September 23 and 24 brought high winds and large hail, causing enough damage to rank as the 25th weather disaster so far in 2023.

The agency said disasters through October of this year included 19 severe storms, two flooding events, a winter storm in the northeastern U.S., a drought and heat wave in the central and southern states, one wildfire (on Maui in August), and one tropical cyclone (Hurricane Idalia in Florida).

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