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Subject:  random musing on Sandy Date:  12/10/2012  10:16 AM
Author:  1poorguy Number:  414495 of 525400

People are still talking about "Superstorm Sandy". It was the biggest (in dimension) Atlantic hurricane in history. Massive damage and disruption. And while technically she reached category 2, she hit the Northeast as a category 1 storm.

A hurricane is a hurricane, don't get me wrong. But category 1 is pretty wimpy (by hurricane standards). 1poorlady is quite familiar with typhoons (Pacific hurricanes), and a "signal 1" (same at cat 1) doesn't even phase her (probably like most Californians barely notice a 3.0 quake). Katrina was cat 5 when it wiped out New Orleans.

NPR was going on about shore developments in the NYC area. Got me wondering...what if Sandy had reached cat 2 at landfall. Or cat 3 (sustained winds up to 129mph). As it is she had a "lowest pressure" of 940 mbars (705 torr). That is atypical of a cat 1 storm (per the wiki), and is more typical of a cat 4 storm. With greater wind speeds the pressure might have gone even lower, creating more surge.

Sandy could have exceeded Katrina in terms of damage, and maybe even loss of life. NYC is much more densely populated.

Rising sea levels, warming ocean temperatures, and changing wind patterns. I certainly don't wish it, but I wonder if NYC better be prepared for more of this. Isn't global warming fun?
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