Lots of busted pipes around here:
Hunkering down at home rather than going to work, canceling thousands of flights and repairing burst pipes from the Midwest to the Southeast has its price. By one estimate, about $5 billion.
The country may be warming up from the polar vortex, but the bone-chilling cold, snow and ice that gripped much of the country – affecting about 200 million people – brought about the biggest economic disruption delivered by the weather since Superstorm Sandy in 2012, said Evan Gold, senior vice president at Planalytics, a business weather intelligence company in suburban Philadelphia.
While the impact came nowhere close to Sandy, which caused an estimated $65 billion in property damage alone, the deep freeze’s impact came from its breadth.
“There’s a lot of economic activity that didn’t happen,” Gold said. “Some of that will be made up, but some of it just gets lost.”
Still, Gold noted his $5 billion estimate pales in comparison with an annual gross domestic product of about $15 trillion – working out to maybe one-seventh to one-eighth of one day’s production for the entire country. ...
School closures took their own toll, keeping home parents who couldn’t find alternatives for their kids. Even if those parents worked from home, they might not have been as productive, said Tony Madden, regional economist with the Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis.
Ah, school closures. Our school district pursues a zero margin for safety. My kids were home Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday. Schools were on a two hour delay Thursday and today (there was an ice warning called from 9 pm to 9 am but lifted before 5 am, I think). I tried to work from home, answering email and blogging (talk about unproductive!), but those papers I need to revise are waiting until next week. Kids are going to school on Saturday until noon, so maybe I'll get some work (or exercise!) done (other than blogging) then.