A recent report has found that storms and flooding during the first six months of 2019 have caused over a billion dollars in damage to infrastructure across the US.
The Associated Press collected data from 24 states and found that the total damage was about $1.2 billion, based on preliminary assessments of public infrastructure categories established by the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA).
The tally includes damage to roads, bridges, water control facilities, public buildings and equipment, as well as parks.
Although the figures are eye-opening, the tally does not account for damage caused by other recent disasters, such as wildfires. In addition, it does not count damage to levees eligible for aid from the US Army Corps of Engineers (USACE). The USACE has estimated repair costs for levees in the Missouri River basin at an additional $1 billion.
To qualify for federal aid based on their populations, each state must meet particular damage thresholds. AP found that most – but not all – of the damage costs tallied will be eligible for federal aid.
While the projected cost is already staggering, AP reports that the total figures are expected to rise, since several states have yet to complete their damage assessments for more recent disasters. Those states which have already submitted their numbers to FEMA could see their figures rise even further, and might be able to add more counties to their disaster declarations.