Looking back to 1938 | FT Alphaville

Looking back to 1938

If Hurricane Irene really is a 100-year event, it makes sense to peruse the archives and check out the last time a storm of this magnitude threatened the tri-state area and Eastern seaboard.

That, of course, was in 1938 — a storm which became known as the great “New England Hurricane”.

So courtesy of the New York Times, here are some clippings (click to enlarge).

First, the 1938 storm’s actual path as it compares to the current projection for Irene:

And now the damage done in and around Boston:

Insurance costs then (via NY Times Archive):

Esimated insurance costs of a similar storm hitting today (via Risk Management Solutions):

Insured losses from wind, storm surge, and flooding would total approximately $40 billion to $55 billion, including losses to both the private insurance market and those policies covered under the National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP).

Related links:
The 1938 Great New England Hurricane Looking to the Past to Understand Today’s Risk