While Hurricane Irene may have failed to produce the cataclysmic images of destruction of Hurricanes Katrina or Andrew, it is certainly likely to leave an impression on the balance sheets of insurers.
While not as powerful as other hurricanes, Irene was slow moving and broad and caused a wide swath of destruction as it advanced up the Atlantic coast. Preliminary reports indicate that ocean surge and rainfall caused widespread inland flooding in New Jersey. While New York City itself emerged relatively unscathed, communities in the Catskill Mountains and the Hudson River Valley have been inundated. Likewise, cities in Vermont such as Wilmington and Brattleboro have seen widespread flooding.
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