Superstorm Sandy: A geographical perspective
When Superstorm Sandy hit coast of the USA it caused disruption that would dominate the headlines for days
In late October, when a hurricane ventured out of the tropics, into the mid-latitudes, it combined with low-pressure weather processes. The result was Superstorm Sandy – an unusual storm with devastatingly high levels of energy, although with wind speeds that fell below those that would deem it a hurricane (74 mph or more).
Having caused destruction in the Caribbean – killing over 50 people in Haiti – Sandy took a sharp turn for the mainland of the United States. Strong winds, heavy rains and a tidal surge caused widespread flooding, power outages and other storm-related damage. An estimated $30bn-$50bn was caused in the US alone.
‘The combination of tropical and extra-tropical systems into one large system and the storm’s sudden western turn were unusual occurrences,’ Professor Scott Robeson of Indiana University tells Geography in the News. In this article we set out to understand the unusual geographies of Sandy one week after it struck the United States.
In the Members' Area:
- Ask the Expert: Professor Scott Robeson, expert in climatology
- Timeline: How Superstorm Sandy developed
- State-by-state: Short-term impacts of Superstorm Sandy
- Talking points: Exploring the geographical issues
- Top 10: The best of the web