Is your power grid ready for the next superstorm?

Energy Central article by Dustin Prescott, Market Director for Grid Integration solutions at ABB - July 30, 2019

In October 2012, Hurricane Sandy hit the eastern coast of the United States after leaving a path of destruction in the Caribbean. The storm knocked out power for 8.5 million people in 21 states and topped off months of extreme weather that began with Hurricane Irene, which left 4 million people without power.

Such superstorms, which used to happen once in a century, have become more frequent in the years since Sandy. In 2017, two of them – Hurricanes Irma and Maria – hit the U.S. within a month of each other. Apart from the widespread destruction to homes and businesses, Maria toppled 80 percent of the Puerto Rico’s power lines and flooded its generators, leaving the island’s residents with the longest and largest blackout in U.S. history.

A study published in science journal ‘Nature’ found that average speed of tropical cyclone movement has slowed since the middle of last century. This phenomenon makes North Atlantic hurricanes more likely to "stall" near coastlines and caused the record-breaking floods during Hurricane Florence in the Carolinas and Hurricane Harvey in Texas.

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