Yes Virginia, this is exactly the kind of weird weather pattern that could be both a product of climate change, and a mere appetizer for what will come later this century. The flooding and winds were mostly moderate by disaster standards, but they were moderate over a huge region. Storm damage is a product not just of severity, it’s also directly related to population i.e., infrastructure. Plucky east coast residents are crawling, bailing and shoveling out now:
LA Times— In the wake of the cyclonic system created by the merger of Sandy, a western storm and cold Canadian air, at least 55 deaths were reported in the United States. Property damage was estimated in the billions of dollars, and with the loss of productivity from the millions of workers who stayed home, the tab could hit as much as $50 billion, according to some insurance estimates. More than 8 million customers lost power during the storm and efforts to bring everyone back on line were proceeding — but slowly in some places.
After days of atmospheric turbulence, the sun returned to Manhattan and there were small green shoots of recovery. Some buses rolled, as did taxis. Bridges that had been shut — turning Manhattan into an isolated and besieged enclave — reopened. Cars clogged some roadways during a tentative morning commute.