Ohio residents can expect to be hit with rain and heavy wind gusts if and when Hurricane Sandy, called “Frankenstorm” by some, hits the East Coast early next week.
Meteorologist Kirk Lombardy, of the National Weather Service in Cleveland, said the hurricane is predicted to hit the East Coast on Monday or Tuesday, with Ohio residents seeing the worst of the storm through Wednesday, when it will begin to move north.
Lombardy and other meteorologists have been intently watching the storm system as it moves toward the U.S. Lombardy said much about the storm is still unknown, but experts say the tropical storm mixing with the cold front over the East Coast can cause a “super storm,” capable of producing heavy storm damage.
After hitting the Bahamas on Thursday, Hurricane Sandy moved north, killing at least 20 people in the Caribbean, according to The Associated Press.
Lombardy said, right now, the storm is moving toward Boston, with eastern New York likely seeing the brunt of heavy rainfall and wind.
“There’s still a bit of uncertainty as to where the storm is expected to go, but the main impact is wind,” he said.
Ohio could see wind gusts of up to 50 mph, and Lombardy said the high winds could cause power outages in the area. He said Cleveland to Mansfield will experience heavier rain than areas west of Cleveland — Elyria is currently predicted to get about an inch of rain, he said.
Lombardy said snow is a “big if” right now. Tropical storms tend to bring warm air with them, but there is a possibility of snow in higher elevations, he said.
Ohio, which is on the fringe of the storm, will likely only experience mild weather effects, but states of emergency have been declared in North Carolina, Virginia, Maryland and New York.
According to Weather Underground, ocean buoys off the coasts of Florida and the Carolinas have recorded sustained winds of around 45 mph Friday afternoon, with gusts steadily increasing to 60 mph.
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