The ingredients awaiting Hurricane Sandy appear to be coming together to create what forecasters are calling a monster combination of high wind, heavy rain, extreme tides and maybe snow that could cause havoc along the East Coast jduring the middle of next week.
“We looking at one of the worst storms on record that we’ve seen in this region,” said Carl Parker, a hurricane specialist.
Sandy, having blown into the Bahamas 48 hours ago after moving through Haiti and Cuba the previous day, continues to barrel north.The storm is expected to encounter a wintry storm chugging across from the West, and frigid air streaming south from Canada.
The rare mix of merging weather systems over a densely populated region, experts predict at least $1 billion in damage.
The resulting storm “will be like a nor’easter with a hurricane embedded in it “.
“The models have really settled in this solution in the last day or so,” Parker said. “The models generally agree on the storm moving north, and then beginning move to the northeast and grazing the southeast coastline.”
At that point, the European model wants Sandy to “hug the coast line,” and move into a landfall somewhere in the mid-Atlantic region, possibly near Baltimore or Washington, D.C. on Tuesday morning (NZDT), Parker said. The U.S. GFS model “shows a later solution where the storm hooks around (to the east) and then comes into New York,” he said.
“Still in both cases, we’re talking about a widespread windstorm that affects most of the northeast.”
One that would create a big, wet mess that settles over the nation’s most heavily populated corridor and reaches as far west as Ohio.
Electricity companies are lining up out-of-state work crews and cancelling employees’ days off to deal with expected power outages.From county disaster chiefs to the federal government, emergency officials are warning the public to be prepared. And President Barack Obama was briefed aboard Air Force One. A campaign official for Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney said the campaign is keeping a close eye on the storm and has decided to cancel a planned rally Sunday night in Virginia Beach.