Sandy Looms Offshore, Expected to Reach New England Early Next Week
The National Weather Service upgraded the tropical storm to a hurricane on Wednesday, Oct. 24.
Hurricane Sandy, which was tracking north at about 18 mph and carrying 105-mph winds on Thursday morning, is expected to approach the Rhode Island area early next week, according to the National Weather Service.
Forecasters at the NWS issued a hazardous weather warning just before 6 am, anticipating "a close pass or a direct hit from late Monday to Tuesday."
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The storm moved through the Caribbean, including the Dominican Republic, Cuba, and Jamaica, over the past four days, and strengthened into a Category 2 hurricane late Wednesday.
According to the NWS, even if the storm remains offshore as it passes New England, it could combine with expected high tides to create a storm surge in low-lying coastal areas, and produce hurricane-strength winds, potentially posing a danger to trees and utility lines.
Locally, the Rhode Island Emergency Management Agency issued the following advisories for residents to get ready for the potential storm:
- Take boats out of the water.
- Trim overgrown tree branches and shrubbery around your property.
- Clear gutters of leaves and other debris.
- Secure or bring inside any outdoor furniture, toys, or decorations.
- Clear leaves and other debris from storm drains in your neighborhood.