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Florida, NYC At Risk Of Greatest Property Loss In Hurricane Storm-Surge: Study

Corelogic 060712

The area encompassing New York City, Long Island and northern New Jersey has the highest exposure in total property value at risk in the event of a large storm or hurricane, according to a report by data analysis firm CoreLogic. However, since the probability of such a storm hitting the area is low, Florida was deemed the most prone to storm-surge risk.

"Just over four million homes in the U.S. along the Atlantic and Gulf Coasts are at risk of hurricane-driven storm-surge damage, with more than $700 billion in total property exposure," a Wednesday CoreLogic press release stated. A storm surge occurs when a hurricane pushes large amounts of water inland, creating massive flooding.

"Florida tops the list of states with the highest total number of properties at risk of being impacted by the effects of storm-surge risk at approximately 1.4 million homes.

Meanwhile, New York City metro area has both the highest total number of properties looked at in the study and the highest financial exposure of properties at risk, with estimated values at more than $168 billion, the study said.

CoreLogic, an U.S. corporation specializing in financial, property and consumer information, analytics and business intelligence, generated the Storm Surge Report by bundling different areas of properties together by geography and value. They then compared this value to the area's risk of a storm-surge phenomenon.

The study examined the metro-city areas around New York, N.Y.; Virginia Beach, Va.; Miami, Fla.; New Orleans, La.; Tampa, Fla.; Boston, Mass.; Houston, Texas; Cape Coral, Fla.; Jacksonville, Fla.; Charleston, N.C.; Bradenton, Fla.; Philadelphia, Pa.; Mobile, Ala. and Corpus Christi, Texas.

"Though more frequently impacted states like Florida, Texas and Louisiana get the most attention when it comes to hurricane vulnerability and destruction, Hurricane Irene made it very clear last summer that hurricane risk is not confined to the southern parts of the country," CoreLogic VP and Database Development Director Dr. Howard Botts said in the release.

"We felt it was important this year to highlight storm-surge risk in a brand new way to establish a better understanding of exposure throughout the states that are most at risk of a direct hurricane hit...Even a Category 1 storm could cause property damage in the billions along the northeastern Atlantic Coast and force major metropolitan areas to shut down or evacuate."

Botts added the database is helpful to insurance companies and homeowners who live outside of high-risk flood areas and are not required to buy flood insurance. Knowing their actual property risk value could encourage them to insure their assets more wisely.

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