Hurricane Harvey Threatens Up to $40 Billion in Damages

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As Category 3 Hurricane Harvey moves toward the Texas Coast, estimates of damage have been put as high as $40 billion in the cost of residential reconstruction. This assumes as many as 200,000 homes could be decimated by storm surges.

According to research firm CoreLogic:

The 2017 hurricane season is upon us, and Hurricane Harvey is the storm on everyone’s watch list. This Hurricane is moving across the western Gulf Coast towards the Texas coastline. Current forecasts depict that the greatest impacts will be felt along the Texas coast on Friday and through the weekend.

CoreLogic® analysis shows that more than 200K U.S. homes are at risk of storm surge damage in Texas, with an estimated $40B in total reconstruction cost value.

The greatest risk, due to its large population, is to Houston and adjacent areas, where damage could be as high as $21 billion. Over 118,000 homes are at risk. The Beaumont Point Arthur area faces a risk as high as $12 billion against a total of 75,000 homes. Corpus Christie faces damage to over 34,000 homes, the damage to which could rise to $6 billion.

According to Weather.com:

Hurricane Harvey continues to intensify and will likely be the nation’s first Category 3 landfall in almost 12 years tonight or Saturday morning, poised to hammer the Texas Gulf Coast with devastating rainfall flooding, dangerous storm-surge flooding and destructive winds this weekend, before taking a strange, meandering path spreading heavy rain toward Louisiana next week.

Also:

This would be the nation’s first Category 3 or stronger hurricane landfall since Hurricane Wilma struck south Florida in October 2005, an almost 12-year run.

Harvey may also be the strongest landfall in this area known as the Texas Coastal Bend since the infamous Category 3 Hurricane Celia hammered the Corpus Christi area in August 1970 with wind gusts up to 161 mph, damaging almost 90 percent of the city’s businesses and 70 percent of its residences and destroying two hangars at the city’s airport.

Harvey will bring a mess of coastal impacts, including storm-surge flooding, high surf with battering waves and damaging winds.

If the storm strengthens more, the CoreLogic numbers could be low.