Sandy deadliest storm since Agnes
NEWARK — Superstorm Sandy was the deadliest hurricane to hit the northeastern United States in 40 years and the second-costliest in the nation's history, according to a report released on Tuesday.
The storm's effects reached far and wide, according to the National Hurricane Center report. While Sandy visited devastation on the East Coast, principally New Jersey and New York, it spurred wind gusts as far west as Wisconsin and as far north as Canada and caused water levels to rise from Florida to Maine, the center found.
The hurricane center attributed 72 U.S. deaths directly to Sandy, from Maryland to New Hampshire. That is more than any hurricane to hit the northeastern United States since Hurricane Agnes killed 122 people in 1972, according to the center's records covering 1851 to 2010. The report counted at least 87 other deaths that were indirectly tied to Sandy, from causes such as hypothermia because of power outages, carbon monoxide poisoning and accidents during cleanup efforts.
The deadliest hurricane in U.S. history hit Galveston, Texas, in 1900 and killed 8,000 to 12,000 people.
The report estimated damage caused by Sandy at $50 billion, greater than any U.S. hurricane except Katrina, which in 2005 caused $108 billion in damage, or $128 billion adjusted to 2012 dollars. Hurricane Andrew in 1992 caused $26.5 billion in damage in Florida, or the equivalent of $44 billion today.
More than 650,000 homes were damaged or destroyed by the storm, and more than 8 million customers lost power, according to the report.