News & Politics

How Concerned Should DC Be About Hurricane Sandy?

A look at what the local news outlets are reporting.

At this early stage, how fearful should Washington-area residents be about the approach
of Hurricane Sandy, currently in the Bahamas and headed toward Florida? We surfed
for the weather prognostications in local and national media and, based on those reports,
would say it’s probably a good idea to expect things to be windy or wet, or both,
Sunday going into Monday. Here’s a sampling:

The Associated Press: “An unusual nasty mix of hurricane and a winter storm.” “Major
weather mess.” “Meteorologists say it is likely to cause $1 billion in damages.”

Capital Weather Gang: “Scenarios range from a historic storm with widespread damaging
winds and flooding to just some blustery showers.”

Accuweather: “From Norfolk to New York City and Boston . . . multiple components have
to come together for the perfect storm.”

Huffington Post: “Sandy resembles Hurricane Grace, which morphed into ‘the perfect
storm’ on Halloween, 1991. The similarities are striking.”

WJLA-Channel 7: “The 0Z European Model forecast for Monday 2pm . . . is definitely
the worst case scenario for the DC area thus far. This scenario would bring high winds,
heavy rain, and potential flooding and wind damage to portions of our area. . . .
we are still taking this with a grain of salt because of the big spread in model guidance
beyond Sunday.”

WeatherUnderground: “Note that the tropical cyclone wind speed probabilities are not
designed to handle the type of structural changes anticipated with Sandy during the
forecast period. As a result . . . these probabilities will underestimate the actual
risk of strong winds away from the center of Sandy.” “Confidence is growing that Sandy will be a major threat to portions
of the Mid-Atlantic and Northeast. Though we feel that it’s likely Sandy will hit
some portion of the Northeast or Mid-Atlantic coast, there remains uncertainty with
where this occurs and the exact magnitude of the impacts.”

On Twitter: “IT IS COMING (probably, next week, to the East Coast)!!!” IT IS “an unusual
mix of a hurricane and a winter storm”!!! It is Frankenstorm!!!”