New York Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo announced on Sunday morning that the Metropolitan Transportation Authority (MTA) will start suspending all public transportation at 7 p.m. Sunday. NYC transit subways will be closed at 7 p.m. and buses will stop running two hours later, while Long Island Rail Road and Metro-North Railroad will start their final trains by 7 p.m. from terminal locations. Subway and rail road stations will be closed after the last trains pass through stations. Hurricane Sandy is whipping up the Atlantic coast, where it will eventually collide with both a mid-latitude trough heading east and a frigid influx of arctic air from the north. Forecasters predict that this could be the most furious storm the region has seen since the 1990’s with storm surges of at least 11 feet expected to slam into Long Island Sound and Raritan Bay. And a full moon on Monday could exacerbate the storm’s formidable power as tides will be at their peak.

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“Sandy expected to bring life-threatening storm surge flooding to the mid-atlantic coast… including Long Island Sound and New York Harbor,” the National Hurricane Center warned. “Winds expected to be near hurricane force at landfall.” Although the storm could shift at any time, there is no doubt that the three weather systems will eventually converge to turn Sandy into a monster storm with a “520 mile reach from the center, and twelve-foot high seas… [that cover] a diameter of ocean 1,030 miles across,” Wunderground reports. This will cause flash flooding, prolonged flooding after the storm, power outages, downed power lines, snow in some parts of the country, and a host of other potentially fatal hazards.

“Winds of 39 mph and higher are predicted to reach the metropolitan region during the predawn hours Monday,” the MTA reported. Crews have been “readying recovery equipment, clearing drainage areas, moving vehicles from low-lying areas at bus depots and rail yards and sealing some tunnel access points.” If winds reach speeds higher than 50 mph, many vehicles will not be permitted to pass MTA crossways. Services could be reinstated as soon as 12 hours after the “Frankenstorm” finishes its deadly business. Hurricane Irene caused $15 billion in damages. This storm is expected to be significantly worse.

You can track the storm’s live progress on Stormpulse.

NYC City Hall just sent out an updated evacuation zone map for Hurricane Sandy. Please be sure to take a look to see where you and your family stand.

Via New York Times

Stock image of waves covering a highway and New York City flooded, Shutterstock, for illustrative purposes only