Thursday, October 25, 2012

Hurricane Sandy Could Be Nightmare Before Halloween

Edit: The NOAA has projected the path of the massive storm to turn inland at Delaware and going far inland, passing directly over Washington, DC, before turning north to pass over Philadelphia, New Jersey as well as New York City. Keep in mind this is still an early projection and the storm [hopefully] will alter its course:

Residents of the US East Coast are keeping their fingers crossed and hoping that Hurricane Sandy doesn't turn into the "Nightmare Before Halloween" super-storm  (dubbed "Frankenstorm" due to the potential for a hybrid cyclone) that many forecast models are currently predicting.

Hurricane Sandy pounded Jamaica yesterday as a strong Category 2 storm, killing at least two people, bringing torrential rain, high winds and a dangerous storm surge to the Caribbean island nation. More than 70% of the island's population are currently without power or essential services. The storm quickly made its way to nearby Cuba, where it is currently battering the eastern part of the island.

Many of the current forecast models for the projected path of the storm have the monster skirting the Eastern Seaboard of the United States, with possible multiple landfalls anywhere from Virginia to Long Island, New York. The most current forecast models have meteorologists deeply concerned that the storm will collide with an early winter storm now forming in the West, and a strong blast of arctic air from Canada that would create a "Perfect Storm" scenario, referring to the monster Nor'Easter that did hundreds of millions of dollars in damages along the US East Coast in 1991 and was the basis of the bestselling book by Sebastian Junger and the movie of the same name starring George Clooney and Mark Wahlberg.

 The "Perfect Storm" is  likely to hit during a full moon when tides are near their highest, increasing the chances of severe coastal flooding the NOAA has warned. With many trees still with leaves and the potential for snow, power outages caused by falling trees could last through to Election Day, some meteorologists fear. Some are saying this storm has all the earmarks of a billion-dollar nightmare for the coast.

People living along the entire Eastern Seaboard are being urged to have emergency plans in place, should the storm strengthen and become a severe threat. Evacuation orders should be taken seriously, and citizens are asked to check on elderly or sick relatives.

Some forecast models have the storm skirting the US coast before heading out to sea. Let's hope that is what happens with this storm...

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