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Hurricane Sandy: observations and analysis of coastal change

June 3, 2014

Hurricane Sandy, the largest Atlantic hurricane on record, made landfall on October 29, 2012, and impacted a long swath of the U.S. Atlantic coastline. The barrier islands were breached in a number of places and beach and dune erosion occurred along most of the Mid-Atlantic coast. As a part of the National Assessment of Coastal Change Hazards project, the U.S. Geological Survey collected post-Hurricane Sandy oblique aerial photography and lidar topographic surveys to document the changes that occurred as a result of the storm. Comparisons of post-storm photographs to those collected prior to Sandy’s landfall were used to characterize the nature, magnitude, and spatial variability of hurricane-induced coastal changes. Analysis of pre- and post-storm lidar elevations was used to quantify magnitudes of change in shoreline position, dune elevation, and beach width. Erosion was observed along the coast from North Carolina to New York; however, as would be expected over such a large region, extensive spatial variability in storm response was observed.

Citation Information

Publication Year 2014
Title Hurricane Sandy: observations and analysis of coastal change
DOI 10.3133/ofr20141088
Authors Kristin L. Sopkin, Hilary F. Stockdon, Kara S. Doran, Nathaniel G. Plant, Karen L.M. Morgan, Kristy K. Guy, Kathryn E.L. Smith
Publication Type Report
Publication Subtype USGS Numbered Series
Series Title Open-File Report
Series Number 2014-1088
Index ID ofr20141088
Record Source USGS Publications Warehouse
USGS Organization St. Petersburg Coastal and Marine Science Center