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Tuesday, October 30, 2012

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Hurricane Sandy, Amazing Storm

Hurricane Sandy, the largest Atlantic tropical system on record, is a late-season tropical cyclone that has affected Jamaica, Cuba, the Bahamas, Haiti, the Dominican Republic, and the eastern seaboard of the United States, reaching to the area south of the Great Lakes Region of the United States, and Eastern Canada. The 18th tropical cyclone, 18th named storm, and 10th hurricane of the 2012 Atlantic hurricane season, Sandy developed from an elongated tropical wave in the western Caribbean Sea on October 22. It became a tropical depression, quickly strengthened, and was upgraded to a tropical storm six hours later. Sandy moved slowly northward toward the Greater Antilles and gradually strengthened.

On October 24, Sandy was upgraded to a hurricane, shortly before making landfall in Jamaica. Upon moving farther north, Sandy re-entered water and made its second landfall in Cuba during the early morning of October 25 as a Category 2 hurricane. During the late evening of October 25, Sandy weakened to Category 1 strength; in the early hours of October 26, it headed north through the Bahamas. Sandy briefly weakened to a tropical storm in the early morning hours of October 27, then restrengthened to a Category 1 hurricane later that morning.

Just before 8 a.m. on October 29, Sandy turned to the north-northwest and started to make its expected approach towards the U.S. coast, still maintaining Category 1 strength. Although the National Hurricane Center has not officially confirmed the location, at 5:46 PM local time, Accuweather announced it had come ashore in between Avalon and Sea Isle City in Cape May County, New Jersey. NOAA announced officially that the storm had come ashore at approximately 8:00 p.m. EDT 5 miles southwest of Atlantic City, New Jersey. On October 29, 2012, at 7:00 p.m. EDT, Sandy was declared a post-tropical cyclone.

Sandy's impact on the United States stretched from North Carolina to New England with tropical storm force winds stretching far inland and significant mountain snows in West Virginia. The cyclone brought a record-breaking storm surge to New York City on the evening of October 29, with numerous streets and tunnels flooded in Lower Manhattan and other areas of the city.

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