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NCAR Scientist Worries About Daughter While He Tracks Sandy

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Kevin Trenberth at NCAR talks with his daughter during Hurricane Sandy (credit: CBS)

Kevin Trenberth at NCAR talks with his daughter during Hurricane Sandy (credit: CBS)

BOULDER, Colo. (CBS4) – The scientists at the National Center for Atmospheric Research have been keeping busy during Hurricane Sandy as they are during all dangerous storms. One scientist at NCAR has a very personal, as well as professional interest in the storm.

Distinguished senior scientist Kevin Trenberth with the NCAR says Sandy is something else, and he’s been glued to his computer.

“The unique thing about this storm compared with a normal hurricane is the size is twice as big,” Trenberth said.

He says it will cause extensive flooding that many won’t be able to escape.

“It’s coming into one of the most populated areas in the world, and the number of people that are affected by this storm is perhaps unprecedented,” Trenberth said.

And it just so happens that Trenberth’s daughter, Annika McGovern, lives in the New York City area, and his wife is visiting her.

“We heard there was a mandatory evacuation,” McGovern said over the phone.

McGovern said they sand-bagged their garden level apartment, moved their stuff to the second floor, and got out.

“The shelves of the grocery store were completely cleared out,” McGovern said. “You could see the lines just twisting and turning down the aisles.”

The big worry is what her father warned about — flooding. The news from neighbors who stayed behind wasn’t good. Leaves were already clogging drains.

“It’s really sad. We just moved in in May, we bought it, of course, so we have flood insurance. I don’t know that a lot of people do,” McGovern said.

All they can do wait it out while Trenberth waits for word from his daughter.

Trenberth is currently staying with relatives about 40 miles from where she lives in Hoboken. She’s safe, but her home may be a different story.

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