Oakland, California-based catastrophe risk modeling firm EQECAT Inc. estimates $5 billion to $10 billion in insured losses and $10 billion to $20 billion in total economic damages from Hurricane Sandy.
The firm noted in its release that the broad wind field of the storm, coupled with the unique geography of the New York City region may combine for high economic losses.
“The New York Harbor area is particularly susceptible to high surges and flooding, since the geographic configuration of the coastline between New Jersey and Long Island meet at roughly 90 degrees,” the release states. “A strong onshore wind can push large volumes of water ‘into the corner,’ allowing it to further elevate surge levels.”
In anticipation of the storm, New York City shut down parts of its subway system on Sunday in anticipation of potential flooding of underground tunnels. Moreover, officials have warned that the city be subject to an 11-foot surge of water that could severely flood Lower Manhattan and potentially damage electrical and communications lines.