Forecasts forecast a dangerous storm in the northeastern United States later today before a hurricane.
Preparations for the storm are becoming more urgent today as the newly upgraded Hurricane Henry approaches the coast.
Landfall is expected tomorrow and forecasters are forecasting a dangerous storm later today in parts of Long Island, Connecticut, Rhode Island and southeastern Massachusetts.
Storms and tides can cause the New England coast to rise as Henry moves inland, while heavy rain and winds can also cause flooding.
Henry was veering a little more west than originally expected, and if this path continued, there would be eastern Long Island in bull’s-eye rather than New England, which has not had a direct hit from a hurricane since Hurricane Bob in 1991, a Category 2 storm that has killed 17 At least one person.
New York hasn’t been hit directly by a powerful hurricane since Sandy wreaked havoc in 2012.
Some of the most important repairs from that storm have been completed, but many projects designed to protect against future storms remain unfinished.
Regardless of exactly landfall, extensive impacts were to be expected across much of the Northeast, extending inland to Hartford, Connecticut, Albany, New York, and east to Cape Cod, which is teeming with tens of thousands of summer tourists.
Reflecting Henry’s changing path, Cape’s hurricane watch was raised on Saturday, although it remained under tropical storm and storm surge warnings.
The National Hurricane Center said a hurricane warning for the southern coast of New England, including Rhode Island, has been extended eastward to western Westport, Massachusetts.
Massachusetts Governor Charlie Baker urged people vacationing in the Cape to leave long before Henry hits, and those planning to start vacations there to put off their plans.
“We don’t want people getting stuck in traffic on Cape Cod bridges when the storm is at full force on Sunday,” he said.
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With a maximum wind speed of 75 mph on Saturday morning, Henry sped slightly to move north-northeast at 14 mph. It is still located about 465 miles south of Montauk on Long Island, New York.
Connecticut Governor Ned Lamont warned Connecticutans that they should prepare for “protection in place” from Sunday afternoon to at least Monday morning as the state braces for its first possible direct hit from a tornado in decades.
“This storm is very worrying,” said Michael Finkelstein, chief of police and director of emergency management in East Lyme, Connecticut.
“We haven’t been down this road in a long time and there is no doubt that we and the rest of New England are going to have some real difficulties with a direct hit from a hurricane.”
The National Weather Service has warned of the potential for damaging winds and widespread coastal flooding from Henry, and officials in Massachusetts, Connecticut and New York have warned that people could lose electricity for a week or even longer.
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