Frankenstorm’s Effects Could Include $600 Million in Canceled Business Travel
The looming “Frankenstorm”—a confluence of Hurricane Sandy and a winter storm system that is expected to strike the East Coast within the next few days—could result in hundreds of millions of dollars in lost business for the travel industry, the Global Business Travel Association (GBTA) reports. The association recently completed research using its Business Travel Quarterly methodology to predict what a Category 3 storm on the East Coast would mean for business travel. The model says that such a major storm could cause as many as 514,000 trips to be canceled, resulting in a $675 million loss in GDP, highlighting the role business travel plays in the U.S. economy.
While Hurricane Sandy is currently only a Category 1 storm, forecasters say it is increasingly likely it will combine on Tuesday with another storm coming out of the Midwest. Some models predict it could be the worst storm in a century to hit the Northwest, surpassing even the 1991 event that inspired the movie The Perfect Storm. The hybrid storm is expected to inflict heavy rains, gale-force winds and extreme tides on the East Coast, with the potential for snow further inland, and expected to stick around for several days. The New York City area could see the worst of it, and Mayor Michael Bloomberg said the city has activated its emergency storm plan. gbta.org