CBS News Warns of the Big One

August 1st, 2006 11:07 AM
Matt Drudge linked to a CBS News story that warned of the Big One. It hasn't happened since 1938, but that doesn't mean that this isn't the very year for a hurricane that would "cripple the U.S. economy" and cause "$200 billion in damages and lost business." This type of hurricane, of course, is three times more likely to occur during Republican administrations.

The story is about the potential of a hurricane hitting New York City. Just how bad would the hurricane be?

Economic losses would be twice that of the 9-11 attacks, and three times larger than Hurricane Katrina. When it comes to a northeast hurricane, experts say forget what you know. They're much bigger than their southern cousins.

So apparently, this storm will be worse than anything that's ever hit Florida.

A major northeast hurricane is nearly three times more likely this year thanks to favorable weather conditions, including the position of the Bermuda High. Last year it pushed storms southwest. Now it's set to steer hurricanes up the East Coast.

"Northern hurricanes move two to three times faster than southern hurricanes, so they're gonna be here much sooner," Coastal Geologist Nicholas Coch told Miller. "So a hurricane that is off the coast of Charleston will be here in eight hours. That fast."

That's exactly what happened in 1938, when the hurricane known as the Long Island Express tore through the region. Hurricane winds charged as far north as Canada.

Whoever worked on the CBS story decided to count the rotten eggs before they cracked, getting specific about an imaginary scenario when it's not even clear such an event will occur.
Opinion is split on whether the insurance industry and the U.S. economy could withstand a $200 billion blow. Even if they did — the experts say it's likely the financial well-being of many Americans will be swept away by the storm.
If CBS really took this story seriously, they'd move their entire news division out of Manhattan and somewhere safe in Connecticut. But they want you to take the story seriously, not them. They have no time for silly gossip and rumors about made-up storms.