Hurricanes | New York | News | weather

Hurricane Irene Could Cause Billions in Damage to NYC, Flood Subways and Many Neighborhoods in Dire Scenario


FiveThirtyEight's Nate Silver, who is usually running the numbers on political races, looks at the damage that could be caused by a hurricane striking New York City, with regard to the storms that have approached the northeast in the past.

Writes Silver:

The numbers do not paint a pretty picture. According the model, a hurricane with windspeeds of about 100 miles per hour — making it a “weak” Category 2 storm — might cause on the order of $35 billion in damage if it were to pass directly over Manhattan. Such a storm would probably flood New York’s subway system as well as acres upon acres of prime real estate in neighborhoods like the East Village, the Financial District, Tribeca, Coney Island, Red Hook, DUMBO, as well as parts of Staten Island and most of the Rockaways.

Although far from the most likely scenario, this may represent a reasonable-worst-case estimate of what could happen if Irene took exactly the wrong turn at exactly the wrong time. National Weather Service models, as of this writing, estimate that there is a 5 to 10 percent chance that Manhattan could experience hurricane-strength winds.

Read his entire, thorough and fascinating as usual, analysis HERE.

Feed This post's comment feed


  1. But as long as New Yorkers make it all about themselves, then isn't it really worth it?

    Posted by: Sam | Aug 26, 2011 9:47:29 AM

  2. Well, the track of Hurricane Agnes, which caused $45 billion in damages, doesn't show it going over Washington DC. Never-the-less there was extensive flooding and damage in the area (including a dam washing out ot far from where I lived). I was working as a night guard at the time and there was about 7 inches of rain that night, including flooding at the place I worked. So I am not sure how valid I find his projections since they only seem to consider New York.

    Posted by: Charlie | Aug 26, 2011 11:08:19 AM

Post a comment


« «Jerry Buell: 'I Try to Teach and Lead My Students as if Lake Co. Schools Had Hired Jesus Christ Himself'« «