Hurricane Sandy Update
The most up-to-date information that is available at the present time shows that Hurricane Sandy has continued to intensify to a 940 mb storm, with 90 mph winds, and expected landfall between coastal Delaware and Atlantic City.
Sandy is a category-1 hurricane on the Saffir-Simpson scale, and approaching category-2 status. This is a dangerous, large and historic storm, posing a greater threat than the largest in 2011, Hurricane Irene.
Storm force winds extend outward over 450 miles. Primary hazards include storm surge for coastal and marine areas, inland flooding, and hurricane force winds. Significant coastal
and inland flooding can be expected, especially for points within 200 miles of the point of landfall. Flooding will be especially severe for coastal areas around Long Island and Manhattan, and coastal areas to Delaware.
Storm force winds, with downed trees and powerlines, some structural damage, and power outages are expected to affect most of the Mid-Atlantic and Northeast. Damage severity and concentrations will be highest within 200 miles of the landfall point. Significant damages and business disruption are possible for this dangerous and historic event.
The catastrophe risk modeling company Eqecat Inc. has issued a statement indicating possible insured losses of US$5 to 10 billion, and total economic losses of US$10 to 20 billion. In comparison, Hurricane Irene caused insured losses in the order of US$4.3 billion.
The eventual size of the monetary losses will depend greatly on actual impacts of Sandy during landfall this evening (US Eastern Standard Time).
Sandy’s imminent danger to the affected population is of course foremost in most people’s minds. Sandy has already become a killer storm, with a death toll exceeding 60 in Cuba, with a great deal of human suffering being suffered across the Caribbean.
Sources: United States National Weather Service, Guy Carpenter, Eqecat Inc.