Oct 18, 2019

2019's big storms cost the U.S. an estimated $22 billion

Hurricane Dorian as a Cat. 2 storm on Sept. 3, 2019. Photo: NOAA via Getty Images

The 14 named storms of 2019 cost the U.S. an estimated $22 billion in damages, according to commercial weather forecaster and federal contractor AccuWeather.

The big picture: AccuWeather also estimates that 2019's season cost less than the 2017 and 2018 seasons, which saw Hurricanes Maria, Harvey and Irma in 2017 and Hurricane Michael in 2018.

Go deeper: Dorian's devastation in Bahamas

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Nestor lashes Georgia; tornadoes rake Florida

Nestor spawned a tornado that damaged this car in Cape Coral, Florida, on Saturday. Photo: Cape Coral Fire Department/Facebook

After Nestor lashed Florida, spawning destructive tornadoes, the post-tropical storm downed trees and caused power outages in Georgia Saturday night with heavy rains and powerful winds, WSB-TV reports.

The latest: The National Hurricane Center said isolated flash flooding was possible across the southeastern U.S. into Sunday. The National Weather Service issued a tornado warning for Godwinsville, Georgia, and flash-flood alerts for areas in the state including Eastman, Abbeville and Chester.

Go deeperArrowUpdated Oct 20, 2019

Snow storm strikes the Midwest

A snowstorm traveling from the west unloaded on Chicago Thursday, breaking a 96-year-old record of heavy snow, wind and cold temperatures, AccuWeather reports.

The big picture: The storm traveled northeast from eastern Iowa and southern Wisconsin to northern Michigan where the total forecast is an average between 3–6 inches. Some areas surrounding Chicago picked up 2–3 inches of snow earlier this week, according to the National Weather Service.

Go deeper: "Potentially historic" October snowstorm expected to strike north-central U.S.

Keep ReadingArrowOct 31, 2019

We're all paying for the opioid epidemic

Photo: John Moore/Getty Images

The ongoing opioid crisis cost $696 billion in 2018 and more than $2.5 trillion between 2015 and 2018, according to a new estimate by the White House Council of Economic Advisers.

Why it matters: Much of this cost is attributable to lives lost to opioids, but a good amount of it is borne by state and federal governments — and thus taxpayers. Meanwhile, opioid litigation settlement talks are homing in on payouts nowhere near this amount.

Go deeperArrowOct 29, 2019