The track for Sandy remains similar to what we have been seeing all day, although there area few models bringing the track a bit further north up the New Jersey coast than earlier. Expect landfall along the New Jersey coastline sometime overnight Monday into early Tuesday morning. While the center of the system will make landfall hundreds of miles away, the threats are still with us.
Wind is a major concern for New England as Sandy gets closer to landfall. A high wind watch is in effect for the entire viewing area with sustained winds expected to be anywhere for 30-50mph and gusts here in Providence could be around 60mph. Along the coast the threat of high winds speeds is greater, there is potential for us to see gusts at or above 70 miles near the coastline. With all the foliage still on branches it won't take much to knock limbs down with the wind. With that comes the potential for wide spread power outages, you want to make sure you are prepared now in case you lose power for an extended amount of time.
A coastal flood watch is also in effect for areas along the coast in Rhode Island and Massachusetts. Storm force to hurricane force wind gusts combined with the astronomical high tide and a storm surge of 3-5 feet will result in moderate to major coastal flooding. The worst of the flooding will occur on Monday during the evenings high tide which will occur at 8:23PM in Newport. With the storm surge beach erosion is also a good possibility.
So, to break it down, expect to wake up to very windy conditions on Monday which will continue to increase through the afternoon. By late Monday afternoon and overnight into very early Tuesday, we will see the highest of wind speeds and gusts. Rain may come in downpours at times but overall expecting only 1-3" when all is said and done. By mid-Tuesday morning the breeze will begin to calm just a bit and we will continue to see scattered rain and breezy conditions through at least Wednesday.