New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo declared a State of Emergency on Friday as Hurricane Sandy—which one expert likened to the "perfect storm" of 1991—leveled houses and killed 40 across the Caribbean.
The New York Daily News cited city officials as saying they were considering evacuating as many as 375,000 New Yorkers as the Category 1 storm aimed for the East Coast, possibly hitting anywhere between Chesapeake Bay and southern New England.
With Sandy expected to hit the city early as Sunday, the city ordered all construction work to be suspended beginning Saturday, while Bloomberg said any decision to evacuate would be made later in the day.
ABC News cited meteorologists as saying that Sandy—as of 5 p.m. Friday centered about 200 miles northwest of Fort Lauderdale—was turning into an "extra-tropical cyclone" and would bring 50 mph winds, rain and storm surges.
“It really could be an extremely significant, historic storm,” said Brian McNoldy, a senior research associate at the University of Miami told The New York Times, adding that conditions were similar to those that created the famous "perfect storm" of 1991.
Sandy was expected to meet Tuesday with a wintry storm moving across the US from the west and frigid air streams south from Canada, CBS reported.
CBS quoted Jeff Masters, meteorology director of the forecasting service Weather Underground, as saying:
"The Perfect Storm only did $200 million of damage and I'm thinking a billion [this time]. Yeah, it will be worse."
“We expect a long-lasting event—two to three days for most people," James Franklin, branch chief of the National Hurricane Center, told the Times. It was "a very large system," he added.