Hurricane Sandy will intensify in Connecticut during the next 24 hours as the storm turns west into New Jersey. Winds will gain velocity and may gust, some forecasters said, up to 90 mph.
The Weather Channel says the highest surges for this unprecedented storm are expected along Long Island Sound and New York Harbor, particularly tonight when they will combine with a full harvest moon high tide.
"History is being written as an extreme weather event continues to unfold, one which will occupy a place in the annals of weather history as one of the most extraordinary to have affected the United States," said Senior Meteorologist Stu Ostro. "This is an extraordinary situation, and I am not prone to hyperbole."
Forecasters say the threat of flooding inland has actually decreased because rainfall totals are now expected to be 1-2 inches. High winds and the power outages that may ensue continue to be the biggest concerns away from the shoreline.
As of 11 a.m., Sandy was about 260 miles south-southeast of New York City and moving at 18 mph with winds of up to 90 mph, according to the National Weather Service.
"Sandy is expected to transition into a frontal or wintertime low pressure system prior to landfall. However, this transition will not be accompanied by a weakening of the system," the National Weather Service reported. "In fact, a little strengthening is possible during this process. Sandy is expected to weaken after moving inland."
“The worst winds should start to decrease after midnight,” Fox CT meteorologist Sam Sampieri said.
Shoreline towns had already seen some flooding before noon on Monday, but the worst is yet to come and the storm will linger for days, according to WFSB.com: "Sandy, once here, won't leave. A blocking pattern will keep the low pressure system meandering around the Northeast for days, not to exit until Friday. If you look at the 7 day forecast, showers are possible all the way through at least Thursday, if not Friday … These are all a direct result of Sandy staying here and dying here."