Archive for Sunday, April 15, 2012

Sedgwick County storm damage could total $283M

April 15, 2012


— Sedgwick County officials say damages could be as high as $283 million after a tornado hit the southeast part of Wichita.

The storm that struck late Saturday night caused damage to a mobile home park and McConnell Air Force Base. A Boeing Co. spokesman says the Wichita plant took a "direct hit." Emergency management officials said that at nearby Spirit AeroSystems, most buildings were damaged. Flash flooding and fires also were reported.

Sedgwick County was one about a dozen counties where homes were damaged or destroyed from a powerful storm system that generated numerous tornadoes.

Kansas Emergency Management spokeswoman Sharon Watson said that in Rice County, inmates had to be transferred after the jail was damaged. And downed power lines closed roads and highways in several central and western counties.


DillonBarnes 6 years ago

I bet they're glad they moved those KC-135s!

Joshua Montgomery 6 years ago

The 22nd CC made a great decision on that.

Looked like a scene from a WWII movie with plane after plane after plane rolling off the runway.

Air Power!

Budgets_Smudgets 6 years ago

You can chalk this headline up to "It's midnight. I'm on deadline. Give me a number to tickle my fanny with a feather, please."

This $283 million dollar so-called "estimate" came out of the mouth of the Chair SG Co Commission even before the storm had left the area and allowed for first responders to access the area as of 12:30 am.

It was made by someone laying an imaginary line on a computer screen of their ESRI GIS screen, across a screen of property tax values, showing a hypothetical strike rectangle, and assuming 100% destruction of all property (and hence property value) within that box.

A nifty side benefit of having lots of GIS information on lots of database layers quickly available for instant analysis..... arrived at even before a storm has left the county and even allowed for people to identify an actual path or width of the wind damage. (Sure, Spirit Systems & Boeing took a direct hit, but I am guessing they were not wiped off the face of the earth. Well, actually this is all this whole number is about, just SWAG)

Newspapers want to print headlines, and elected officials love being quoted. But an old computer truism is GIGO - garbage in, garbage out.

My condolences to those who lost valued property and any being injured.

And I could be totally wrong, but I think it is more likely that my dog will play the piano for me to today than it is that Wichita experienced $283 million dollars worth of damage last night.

DillonBarnes 6 years ago

I was wondering how they could get an estimate out so quickly. A good explanation.

mom_of_three 6 years ago

Spirit and Boeing did suffer significant damage to several buildings, and probably what was ever inside of those buildings. So while the estimate may seem pulled out of thin air, it may be pretty accurate.

doc1 6 years ago

$5.00 of that estimate is for the entire trailer park.

Budgets_Smudgets 6 years ago

The reporter justifies this number because "I'm just reporting what the official said" and "It is very preliminary." I question the whole methodology. And I call BS on reporters who print quotes which have no basis in the real world.

Mom-of-three. I'll bet you a six-pack that total damages, including those to Boeing/Spirit/McConnell total less than 30% of that over-hyped number, that was derived *before anyone even knew the actual footprint of the damage!" That is my point. it was a wild-ass guess by a staffer with some GIS computer knowledge, but no knowledge of any real damage.

It will take an awful lot of mobile homes, manufactured housing, car ports, or structures in general at that location just to get to a million or two. The photos I have seen out of Wichita as of mid-day don't suggest damage higher, even allowing $50-60 million for Spirit/Boeing, which I find to also be unlikely.

DillonBarnes 6 years ago

That Wichita Eagle link I posted is a little more clear. From that article:

"He stressed that the $283 million figure, was just that, an estimate. The figure likely will decrease once officials can see how much damage those properties actually sustained."

So although this article is somewhat deceiving, I don't think that was the intent of the commissioner.

mom_of_three 6 years ago

It may be over-hyped by a lot, but until boeing and spirit see what was damaged inside of those buldings with no roofs or caved in roofs, we won't know.
And no, it didn't hit a rich area of town. it didn't hit too many houses from what I have read. But when someone says give me an estimate, don't you generally aim higher, rather than lower?
good thing we don't pay on estimates, only on actual costs.
I'd say wichita was really lucky. I saw a picture taken near the mobile home park, and the power line poles were broken in half, and the metal electrical wire holder arms were twisted like pretzals.
I hope the folks at spirit and boeing get paid while the repairs are being made.

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