Waves crash into a pier in Nags Head, N.C., Oct. 27, 2012. (Gerry Broome/AP)[UPDATED: 8:00 p.m. ET]„Superstorm.” „The Perfect Storm.” „Frankenstorm.”Whatever you want to call it, the East Coast is bracing for Hurricane Sandy, a „rare hybrid storm” that is expected to bring a life-threatening storm surge to the mid-Atlantic coast, Long Island Sound and New York harbor, forecasters say, with winds expected to be at or near hurricane force when it makes landfall sometime on Monday.According to the National Hurricane Center, the Category 1 hurricane was centered about 280 miles southeast of Cape Hatteras, N.C., and 485 miles south of New York City early Sunday, carrying maximum sustained winds of 75 mph and moving northeast at 15 mph.[Slideshow: Latest photos from Hurricane Sandy]New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg ordered the immediate, mandatory evacuation for low-lying coastal areas, including Coney Island, the Rockaways, Brighton Beach, Red Hook and some parts of lower Manhattan along the East River.”If you don’t evacuate, you’re not just putting your own life at risk,” Mayor Bloomberg said at a news conference Sunday. „You’re endangering first responders who may have to rescue you.”New Jersey Governor Chris Christie’s message for residents was a bit more blunt. „Don’t be stupid,” Christie said SundayUtilities and state road workers monitor the situation on Virginia Dare Trail as rain and wind from Hurricane Sandy engulf the beachfront road in Kill Devil Hills, N.C., Sunday, Oct. 28, 2012. Tens of thousands of people were ordered to evacuate coastal areas Sunday as big cities and small towns across the U.S. Northeast braced for the onslaught of a superstorm threatening some 60 million people along the most heavily populated corridor in the nation. (AP Photo/Gerry Broome) afternoon, announcing the suspension of the state’s transit system beginning at 12:01 a.m. Monday.Earlier, New York Governor Andrew Cuomo announced the suspension of all MTA service–including subways, buses, Long Island Railroad and Metro North–beginning at 7 p.m. Sunday. New York City Public Schools will be closed on Monday, the mayor said. The New York Stock Exchange said its trading floor will be closed on Monday, too–the first such shutdown in 27 years, according to the Wall Street Journal.[Related: Superstorm could impact 60 million]Sandy is expected to continue on a parallel path along the mid-Atlantic coast later Sunday before making a sharp turn toward the northwest and southern New Jersey coastline on Monday–with the Jersey Shore and New York City in its projected path.But the path is not necessarily the problem.”Don’t get fixated on a particular track,” the Associated Press said. „Wherever it hits, the rare behemoth storm inexorably gathering in the eastern U.S. will afflict a third of the country with sheets of rain, high winds and heavy snow.”
(FEMA)A tropical storm warning has been issued between Cape Fear to Duck, N.C., while hurricane watches and high-wind warnings are in effect from the Virginia to Massachusetts. The hurricane-force winds extend 175 miles from the epicenter of the storm, while tropical storm-force winds extend 500 miles–or roughly 1,000 miles end to end, making Sandy one of the biggest storms to ever hit the East Coast.”We’re looking at impact of greater than 50 to 60 million people,” Louis Uccellini, head of environmental prediction for the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, told the Associated Press.”The size of this alone, affecting a heavily populated area, is going to be history making,” Jeff Masterswrote on the Weather Underground blog.President Barack Obama received a briefing on the storm at Federal Emergency Management Agency headquarters in Washington on Sunday. „My main message to everybody involved is that we have to take this seriously,” President Obama said. „[We will] respond big and respond fast.”[Also read: Big storm scrambles presidential race schedules]„I can be as cynical as anyone,” Christie said on Saturday, announcing a state of emergency. „But when the storm comes, if it’s as bad as they’re predicting, you’re going to wish you weren’t as cynical as you otherwise might have been.”Meanwhile, emergency evacuations were being mulled by state officials in Connecticut, Massachusetts, Vermont, New Hampshire and even Maine.In Virginia, Governor Bob McDonnell said 20,000 homes there had already reported power outages.
(Weather.com)”This is not a coastal threat alone,” said FEMA director Craig Fugate said during a media briefing early Sunday. „This is a very large area.”Forecasters also fear the combination of storm surge, high tide and heavy rain–between 3 and 12 inches in some areas–could be life-threatening for coastal residents.According to the National Hurricane Centersummary, coastal water levels could rise anywhere between 1 and 12 feet from North Carolina to Cape Cod, depending on the timing of the „peak surge.” A surge of 6 to 11 feet is forecast for Long Island Sound and Raritan Bay, including New York Harbor.The storm surge in New York Harbor during Hurricane Irene in September 2011, forecasters noted, was four feet.
Storm sets off frantic rush for supplies across East Coast By Dave Warner | Reuters – 5 hrs ago
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PHILADELPHIA (Reuters) – Good luck buying lanterns, generators, propane, or – if you are really unprepared – rain boots and batteries in areas in the path of Hurricane Sandy as it bears down on the U.S. East Coast.The approach of the gigantic storm, which is expected to come ashore on Monday night set off a weekend scramble for supplies from Virginia to New England, causing long lines at gas stations, bare shelves at hardware and home-supply shops, and a run on bread, bottled water and canned foods.”It’s been crazy. We’re the only one open who still has gas,” said Karen Tripodi, a customer service representative at Cumberland Farms, a gas station and market in Newington, Connecticut. „They’re coming in for propane, ice, water, milk and cigarettes.”Forecasters described the „super storm” as a rare hybrid created by an Arctic jet stream wrapping itself around a tropical storm, possibly dumping up to 12 inches of rain in some areas, as well as heavy snowfall inland.With big population centers including New York, Philadelphia, Washington, Baltimore and Boston in the storm’s path, city and state officials held a stream of news conferences to announce mass transit shutdowns, school closures and tips for riding out the storm.Many took the warnings to heart. At a Lowe’s store in Bowie, Maryland, the hot-selling items included generators, batteries, sandbags, sand, water, emergency radios, tarps, dry ice, lanterns, plywood, gas cans, propane, rain boots and rain suits.Manager Eric Williams said, „It seems to be a very busy day, but controlled.”At Cosey Beach, Connecticut, which was under an evacuation order, homeowners scrambled to pack and board up windows.”I can’t imagine what kind of damage this will do,” said Melissa Stone as she helped her father prepare to leave his home. „It makes me sick, I can’t even think about it.”FIFTY MILLION IN STORM’S PATH-On its current projected track, Sandy is most likely to make landfall in the New York/New Jersey area and head inland toward Philadelphia, forecasters said. Many of the 50 million people in the storm’s path have rushed to prepare.Authorities expect widespread power outages, and many residents bought generators in case power lines were brought down. Flashlights and batteries also were in demand.The storm is expected to play havoc with road, rail and air transportation. New York City’s subway, bus and train service will be suspended on Sunday evening. Only once before have transportation officials taken such a step — when Hurricane Irene slammed the city in 2011.Some people thought the precautions a little much.While Mayor Bloomberg ordered the evacuation of some low-lying areas of New York City that are home to around 375,000 people, some refused to budge.”We’re staying put,” said Dr. Gerry Casey, an emergency room doctor at Kings County hospital in Queens who lives one block from the beach in Belle Harbor, within the evacuation zone.He said he wanted to keep an eye on his house and had 10 sandbags ready and a pile of sand and empty bags in his basement. „If I’m here and it’s still rising, I could still board up the windows.”Others were less sanguine, including Loretta Henke, 65, a retired teacher waiting at New York’s Pennsylvania Station to catch one of the last trains heading out to Long Island.”This may be foolish, but I’m going out to my daughter’s house,” she said, adding that she was worried that if she waited any longer she would not be able to get out of Manhattan in time for Halloween. „My daughter said, ‘Just come tonight,’ and I want to be with family.”E.J. Shindledecker, the owner of Sharky’s restaurant in Dewey Beach, Delaware, said he was puzzled by the number of visitors wandering about on Sunday, when Rehoboth planned to host its popular Sea Witch Festival. It was later canceled.”I see families with little kids walking up and down the street in front of the restaurant and I’m thinking, ‘why are you here?'” said Shindledecker. „I didn’t see that much traffic going north and I’m thinking ‘You got to get out of here.'”(Additional reporting by Daniel Lovering in Massachusetts, Barbara Goldberg in New Jersey, Mary Ellen Godin in Connecticut, Medina Roshan in Maryland and Tom Hals in Pennsylvania; Writing by David Bailey; Editing by Paul Thomasch and David Brunnstrom)
American Airlines suspends operations due to Hurricane Sandy by Reuters – 47 mins ago
(Reuters) – U.S. airlines American Airlines and American Eagle said on Sunday they will be suspending operations at a number of airports in the Mid-Atlantic and Northeast regions due to severe weather from Hurricane Sandy.The shutdown starts from late on Sunday and would last until about midday on Wednesday, the airlines said.The companies said it was also possible additional delays might be seen in the aftermath of Hurricane Sandy and some scheduled flights might be canceled beyond Wednesday.(Reporting by Sakthi Prasad in Bangalore; Editing by Robert Birsel)
Magnitude 7.7 quake strikes off Canadian coast By JEREMY HAINSWORTH | Associated Press – 4 hrs agoEnlarge PhotoAssociated Press/Eugene Tanner – Erica Avegalio, center, and her brother Albert Avegalio, right, load up on water and food at the Times Supermarket after learning of a tsunami warning Saturday, Oct. 27, 2012, …more
Companies delay earnings reports due to hurricane By Reuters – 3 hrs ago
NEW YORK (Reuters) – Drugmaker Pfizer Inc and power companies Entergy Corp and NRG Energy Inc said they would postpone releasing quarterly earnings results because of the hurricane approaching the U.S. Northeast.Pfizer and Entergy had been due to report their third-quarter results on Tuesday. NRG was scheduled to release its results on Wednesday.Pfizer rescheduled the release of its results and its conference call with analysts until Thursday, November 1, citing „the expected severe weather conditions associated with Hurricane Sandy.”Entergy pushed its conference call back to November 5. It said it was making the move in consideration of those preparing for the storm.NRG rescheduled its third-quarter earnings call until November 2.Other companies, such as energy company Anadarko Corp , are going forward with their earnings releases as planned. Anadarko will announce its results on Monday afternoon, according to a company spokesman.NYSE’s Entergy says they are in restoration mode3:43
Hurricane’s death toll rises to 65 in Caribbean By TRENTON DANIEL | Associated Press – 7 hrs agoEnlarge PhotoAssociated Press/The Miami Herald, Carl Juste – Residents of Leogane, Haiti find higher ground as the water level continues to rise Friday, Oct. 26, 2012. Residents of Leogane have had five consecutive days …more