Updated 11/01/2012 03:31 PM
Meteorologist: Sandy-like storm will happen again
As millions wait for floodwaters to recede or for the power to come back on, others try to determine whether Sandy can happen again. Our Megan cruz spoke with the National Weather Service in Albany where officials said it's not a question of if, but when.
To view our videos, you need to
install Adobe Flash 9 or above. Install now.
Then come back here and refresh the page.
ALBANY, N.Y. -- "These things happen periodically, these big storms, so it's just a matter of time."
And for the mid-Atlantic and Northeast, their time had come with Sandy.
Steve DiRienzo is a warning coordination meteorologist for the National Weather Service. He said while Sandy was a rare breed, "I can go back in history '38, '62, '85, '92, 1950. I can bring up a litany of storms that have done tremendous damage," he said.
DiRienzo said the last storm similar to Sandy in terms of damages and deaths to the area was 50 years ago. It was the Ash Wednesday storm of 1962. Forty people died from that storm, and it produced massive coastal flooding.
But with Sandy and Irene less than two years apart, people have begun to speculate.
"People will debate whether or not there is climate change," said Governor Cuomo during a news conference October 31st.
DiRienzo said there's no debating it. There is climate change. But he wouldn't say it's the sole cause of storms like Sandy.
"It's just the randomness of Mother Nature," said DiRienzo.
Whether our actions irritate her though, "We have records going back to the 1800s. There are wet times, dry times, cold times, warm times - there's so much natural variability that I don't know how you can pull out what's man -made or not," he continued.
But as unpredictable as Mother Nature is, DiRienzo says that forecasters have determined that hurricanes happen in cycles. There are 25-year periods when hurricanes are more likely, 25-year periods when they're not.
Right now, we're in an active cycle until 2020.
"We just need to be prepared because they can happen," said DiRienzo.