One of the parts of the storm analysis system which is often overlooked is economic models. As tropical storm Alberto plows through the Gulf of Mexico, it appears to have set a course north through Alabama and Tennessee. Damage costs have been put at $800 million, slightly lower than expected two days ago.
According to research firm Enki Research, because the storm has started inland and will lose some of its most powerful winds and rain:
The 5am National Hurricane Center forecast reflects these changes and now has landfall at late tonight, further west than yesterday evening’s forecast, and much weaker. So our damage forecast has dropped some, but not as much as you might think. Most of the economic damage from Alberto has already been done, in the form of a disrupted Memorial Day weekend. So the estimate of $1.1 Billion only dropped to $800 to $900 Billion – at least $600 Million of economic impact is already “locked in” even though the storm hasn’t even hit land yet!
Much of the southern part of Florida, a huge tourist destination, was soaked with water and buffeted by winds as high as 40 MPH.
Interestingly enough, a more damaging weather situation was much further north this weekend as parts of the area around Baltimore were high with huge floods. Weather.com announced:
According to weather.com meteorologist Jonathan Belles, a line of stagnant thunderstorms dropped more than 6 inches of water in just under two hours between Ellicott City and Baltimore. Some spots may have received 10 inches of rain in a 3-hour span. The Patapsco River, located southeast of Ellicott City, experienced a 17-foot-climb in water levels over those two hours.
The surge means that water levels have been measured in feet not inches. Buildings have collapsed and cars swept away. The flooding has caused at least one death.
Now almost over, the Memorial Day weekend has badly battered two areas.