As I write, Hurricane Sandy is a Category 2 hurricane causing havoc in the Caribbean. It has hit Jamaica, Haiti, Cuba, and the Bahamas. According to forecasters, the storm is also expected to track north and hit the Northeastern seaboard early next week. Forecasters say Sandy has the potential to bring gale-force winds, flooding, heavy rainfall, and potentially some snow to parts of the Northeast.
NASA observed that as of October 25, 2012, Hurricane Sandy had the potential to becomes a very destructive storm along the U.S. East Coast. As you can see from the above image showing Hurricane Sandy’s projected path, the current U.S. National Hurricane Center prediction shows the storm heading north and then veering northeast before swinging back in to make landfall around New Jersey.
The National Weather Service reported that Hurricane Sandy could skirt eastern Florida on the way up the Atlantic, making a possoble “close pass” or “direct hit” in New England from Monday and Tuesday. The potential impacts include high seas, storm surge, coastal flooding, and interior flooding. In addition, these weather events are expected to happen when tides are around their highest, which significantly increases the potential for flooding.
Forecasters are predicting that Sandy will lose some strength and it moves north toward the greater New York City region around Tuesday. However, there is real potential for Sandy to combine with another storm coming from the west, as well as a blast of Arctic air coming from the north. Jim Cisco from the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration prediction center has reportedly said, “It’ll be a rough couple days from Hatteras up to Cape Cod”, and of serious concern, “We don’t have many modern precedents for what the models are suggesting.”
Some are comparing this storm scenario to the so-called Perfect Storm that hit off the coast of New England back in 1991. However, Cisco has pointed out that storm didn’t hit as populated an area as we may be facing here. Weather forecasters will be watching this potentially very destructive storm closely as it moves up the coast.