The past year has been pretty costly for the United States in terms of extreme weather disasters, with 12 separate billion dollar disasters in 2011 alone.
The year’s total damage sums-up to about $52 billion, breaking the previous record of 9 separate weather-related billion disasters in 2008.
626 human lives were lost across all 12 disasters this year, and according to The National Weather Service, more than 1,000 lives were lost across all weather categories in 2011.
NOAA is continuing to investigate and assess data regarding several other weather events throughout 2011, but there are no additional billion dollar events just yet. The following are the 12 extreme weather events that later sent invoices with numbers in the billions:
Texas, New Mexico, Arizona Wildfires Spring-Fall 2011
The most destructive fire in Texas history, destroying more than 1,500 homes and 500,000 acres in Arizona. Cost of nearly $2 billion.
Hurricane Irene, August 20-29, 2011
More than 7 billion homes and businesses lost power and at least 45 deaths were reported. Cost over $7.3 billion.
Upper Midwest Flooding, Summer 2011
At least 5 deaths reported. Cost not yet calculated, but expected to far surpass $1 billion.
Mississippi River Flooding, Spring-Summer 2011
At least 7 deaths reported. Cost ranging from $3-4 billion.
Southern Plains/Southwest Drought, Heatwave, & Wildfires, Spring-Fall, 2011
Impacted Texas, Oklahoma, New Mexico, Arizona, southern Kansas and western Louisiana. Cost around $10 billion.
Midwest/Southeast Tornadoes and Severe Weather June 18-22, 2011
An estimated 81 tornadoes over states in the central U.S. 177 deaths and costs more than $9.1 billion.
Southeast/Ohio Valley/Midwest Tornadoes, April 25-30, 2011
Estimated 343 tornadoes and 321 deaths. Costs to exceed $10.2 billion.
Midwest/Southeast Tornadoes, April 14-16, 2011
Estimated 177 tornadoes and 38 deaths, 22 of which were in North Carolina. Costs greater than $2.1 billion.
Southeast/Midwest Tornadoes, April 8-11, 2011
Estimated 59 tornadoes with zero deaths. Costs exceeded $2.2 billion.
Midwest/Southeast Tornadoes, April 4-5, 2011
Estimated 46 tornadoes and 9 deaths. Costs more than $2.8 billion.
Groundhog Day Blizzard, Jan 29-Feb 3, 2011
Impacted many central, eastern and northeastern states. 36 deaths and a cost of around $1.8 million.