chapter  5
18 Pages

Storm Surge Modelling for the New York City Region

ByMalcolm J. Bowman, Brian A. Colle, Hamish Bowman

The New York City (NYC) metropolitan area has a history of tropical cyclone landfalls  near NYC, such as the hurricanes of 1821 (category 3), 1893 (category 2; Scileppi and  Donnelly, 2007) and the category 3 Long Island Express hurricane in 1938 (Brooks,  1939). The most recent hurricane to make landfall on Long Island was Hurricane  Gloria, which crossed central Long Island, New York, at 16:00 UTC on 27 September  1985 with 75 knot (kt) (~37m/second) sustained winds and a central pressure of 961  hectopascals (hPa) (Case 1986). More recently, tropical storm Floyd, on 16 September  1999, created a maximum surge of ~1m around NYC (Colle et al, 2008); but luckily  the peak surges of Floyd and Gloria occurred near low tide, so only minor flooding was  observed. Winter nor’easters, although not as violent as hurricanes, can inflict significant damage as they tend to persist much longer (e.g. the December 1992 storm). The  consequences of some of these extreme weather events are discussed in Hill (1996),  Bloomfield et al (1999), Bowman et al (2008) and Chapter 13 in this volume.