Sandy barrels toward tri-state area
The National Hurricane Center released this forecast model for Hurricane Sandy at 2 p.m. on Thursday, Oct. 25. It shows the storm heading right for the tri-state area by Tuesday, Oct. 30.
Redding and the rest of the area are going to be hit early next week with high winds, possible flooding and downed trees and power lines, according to weather forecasters. The only question is: How bad will it be?
With the hurricane potentially colliding with two other weather systems to form what forecasters are calling "Frankenstorm," the southwestern Connecticut area could start feeling the effects from Sunday through at least Tuesday, when Hurricane Sandy is expected to hit land south of here.
"There is increasing confidence that the tri-state area will feel the impacts of a dangerous coastal storm late this weekend into early next week," the National Weather Service said in a hazardous weather outlook issued Friday morning.
"This includes the potential for heavy rainfall and resultant significant urban, small stream and river flooding, high winds causing widespread downing of trees and power lines, and significant shoreline impacts from coastal flooding and beach erosion. The specific impacts will ultimately depend on the exact track and evolution of Tropical Storm Sandy as it interacts with a deepening upper level low pressure system approaching the East Coast."
Along with Sandy, forecasters are tracking a wintry storm from the West and frigid air stream moving south from Canada.
If all three systems meet Tuesday morning in the tri-state area, which is what current weather forecasts are predicting, it would create a big, wet and wintry storm from here to Ohio.
"We don't have many modern precedents for what the models are suggesting," Jim Cisco, the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration forecaster who coined the "Frankenstorm" name, said.
The tri-state area could get up to 5 inches of rain and gale-force winds of 40 mph. Snow is more likely to the west.
Sandy, which currently is off the eastern coast of Florida, could hit this area with sustained winds up to 80 mph. The storm is expected to keep heading north-northwest before hooking northwest off the coast of North Carolina and make landfall on the shores of Delaware Bay, which is on the New Jersey-Delaware border.
The forecasts all week have increasing shown Sandy hooking more and more west and more south of Connecticut with each model. But the storm on Thursday was 1,500 miles in diameter. The storm has killed 21 in the Caribbean, according to news reports.