Uncertain Sandy could affect Suffolk

Published 11:32 pm Thursday, October 25, 2012

A late-season hurricane making its way toward the East Coast could have some implications for Suffolk Saturday through Monday.

Hurricane Sandy could bring strong winds and heavy rain to the area beginning Saturday evening and continuing through early Monday, according to the National Weather Service.

On Thursday afternoon, the storm was a Category 2 hurricane, with maximum sustained winds about 105 miles per hour. It battered Cuba, Jamaica, Haiti and the Dominican Republic earlier in the week before moving on to disrupt tourists’ fall vacations in the Bahamas.

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“We’re expecting Sandy to continue to move north-northwest along the Southeast coast,” said Mike Montefusco, a meteorologist with the National Weather Service office in Wakefield.

The storm is expected to align with the Carolinas on Saturday.

“From there, we do still have a little bit of disagreement on the storm track from Sunday moving onward,” Montefusco said. “We’re still taking a look at the forecast and fine-tuning it at this time.”

However, he said, there are some things that are certain.

“Despite that uncertainty, we can certainly say we’ll be getting some wind and some rain out of this situation.”

Montefusco predicted winds in Suffolk would pick up to 20-25 miles per hour on Saturday evening.

“We will be getting some gusty winds and potentially some very heavy rain during the day on Sunday and into early Monday,” he said.

He cautioned against brushing off the late-season storm as a non-threat.

“I would certainly encourage everyone to not only monitor our forecast, but tune in to your favorite news outlet,” he said. “The forecast is by no means set in stone. We continue to monitor what’s going on.”

City of Suffolk Chief of Staff Debbie George said city staff held a planning meeting on Thursday.

“We always take the possibility of severe weather very seriously,” she said in an email.

For more information on Sandy, keep returning to this website throughout the weekend and visit the National Hurricane Center at www.nhc.noaa.gov or the National Weather Service at www.weather.gov.