2017 Ranks as Most Expensive Year for Disasters Thanks to Hurricanes, Wildfires

By Siegel, Josh | Examiner (Washington, D.C.), The, January 8, 2018 | Go to article overview

2017 Ranks as Most Expensive Year for Disasters Thanks to Hurricanes, Wildfires


Siegel, Josh, Examiner (Washington, D.C.), The


Three consecutive hurricanes and a flurry of major Western wildfires made 2017 the most expensive year ever for natural disasters, the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration reported Monday.

The disasters cost $306 billion in total damage, with 16 events that caused more than $1 billion in damage each and collectively killed 362 people.

Hurricanes represented most of the costs, at $265 billion.

Hurricane Harvey, which flooded Houston in August and September, was the year's costliest disaster, causing $125 billion in damage.

Hurricane Maria caused $90 billion in damage after devastating Puerto Rico and the Caribbean in late September, setting off a humanitarian crisis and leaving much of the U.S. territory without power. Hurricane Irma, hitting the Caribbean and Florida earlier in September, caused $50 billion in damage, NOAA reports.

Western wildfires, mostly in California, cost $18 billion and killed 54 people. …

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2017 Ranks as Most Expensive Year for Disasters Thanks to Hurricanes, Wildfires
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