Publication Abstracts

Hall and Sobel 2013

Hall, T.M., and A.H. Sobel, 2013: On the impact angle of Hurricane Sandy's New Jersey landfall. Geophys. Res. Lett., 40, 2312-2315, doi:10.1002/grl.50395.

Hurricane Sandy's track crossed the New Jersey coastline at an angle closer to perpendicular than any previous hurricane in the historic record, one of the factors contributing to record setting peak-water levels in parts of New Jersey and New York. In order to estimate the occurrence rate of Sandy-like tracks we use a stochastic model built on historical hurricane data from the entire North Atlantic to generate a large sample of synthetic hurricanes. From this synthetic set we calculate that under long-term average climate conditions a hurricane of Sandy's intensity or greater (category 1+) makes NJ landfall at an angle at least as close to perpendicular as Sandy's at an average annual rate of 0.0014 /yr (95% confidence range 0.0007 to 0.0023); i.e., a return period of 714 yr (95% confidence range 435 to 1429).