Sandy Closes In On the Northeast, Morning Tsunami Scare
Preparation Time Winding Down
Picture From NBC 29
From the Red Cross: “This is a dangerous storm that should be taken seriously, and people should get ready now,” said Charley Shimanski, senior vice president of Disaster Services for the Red Cross. “Sandy could affect people all along the East Coast and the Red Cross is preparing to open shelters and is moving workers, vehicles and relief supplies into place.” Sandy is expected to bring as much as ten inches of rain and flooding in some areas, winds gusting up to 80 miles per hour, extended power outages and even several feet of snow in the higher elevations. Red Cross chapters throughout the potentially affected areas are mobilizing hundreds of disaster workers, readying shelters and coordinating response efforts with community partners. Red Cross workers in Pennsylvania, New Jersey, Maryland and Delaware are finalizing preparations in advance of opening shelters as early as Sunday afternoon if needed. Relief supplies like cots, blankets, ready-to-eat meals and snacks are being moved into place to support sheltering efforts.”
Sandy is now expected to stay at hurricane intensity until it makes landfall somewhere along the coast of New Jersey.
New York Prepares
From the Wall Street Journal
From WSJ: “Mayor Michael Bloomberg on Sunday ordered the evacuation of 370,000 people from low-lying areas in New York City in anticipation of Hurricane Sandy, signifying officials growing concern about the severity of the storm and its impact on the five boroughs. The mayor also said all of the city’s 1,750 schools would be closed on Monday. The city opened 65 shelters in public schools on Sunday morning and more could be opened. Last year, the mayor called for an evacuation in anticipation of Tropical Storm Irene, which officials called unprecedented. The mayor warned on Saturday that there could be pre-emptive power outages in Lower Manhattan. The mayor ordered all parks closed at 5 p.m. Sunday.”
New Jersey Prepares
From Business Week: “New Jersey Governor Chris Christie declared a state of emergency yesterday, as Hurricane Sandy barreled toward the U.S. East Coast and appeared headed to strike land near Delaware Bay. Christie said the state is prepared for hurricane-force winds along portions of New Jersey’s Atlantic Ocean coastline. Delaware Bay separates Delaware from the southern coastline of New Jersey. The governor ordered the mandatory evacuation of all the state’s barrier islands south of Sandy Hook and the closing of the state’s 12 casinos, both at 4 p.m. today. In New York City, authorities began preparing a schedule for a shutdown of the city’s subway, bus and commuter-train systems.”
Canadian Earthquake and Hawaii Tsunami Scare
7.7 Magnitude earthquake reported in a rural area of British Columbia. It was a shallow quake so had this been a more densely populated, it could have been significantly more devastating. After the earthquake, concerns developed for a tsunami situation in the Pacific Island.
The tsunami arrived with little fanfare in Hawaii around 4:30 ET. Thankfully, the tsunami wasn’t as intense as it could have been.
Watching Hawaii closely early this morning
From USA Today: “Hawaii Gov. Neil Abercrombie says a tsunami warning that spurred coastal evacuations statewide is being downgraded to a tsunami advisory, ending the threat of serious damage. Abercrombie said early Sunday that the Aloha State was lucky to avoid more severe surges after a powerful earthquake struck off the coast of Canada. Abercrombie says beaches and harbors are still closed statewide. Meanwhile, the National Weather Service canceled tsunami advisories for Canada and Oregon, leaving northern California as the only spot in North America still under a tsunami advisory.”
Check back here for more updates.