Hurricane Earl has the potential to affect as many as 26 million people, while it unleashes its fury on the East Cost right on the eve of Labour Day weekend. High waves of up to 20 feet were reported off Cape Hatteras, North Carolina.
As Earl churned north parallel to the U.S East coast, its impact seemed to be less than what experts believed originally after the storm’s category was eased from a higher level of 4 to 2. Later yesterday gusts were measured to have comparatively slowed down to around 105mph from devastating 140mph. The hurricane was reported to be moving east of the Outer Banks of North Carolina alongside the coast. The storm, as per the forecast, is likely to weaken further over the next 2 days. The met experts believe that the storm is still capable of wreaking havoc in the coastal areas that it is still to pass by.
Models used to forecast the path and intensity of the storm indicated that Earl is likely to make a landfall in Canada. Ferry service between North Carolina’s Outer Banks and the mainland was shut down. A state of alert has been declared in Massachusetts and Rhode Island apart from North Carolina, Virginia and Maryland. A curve in the jet stream over the eastern US may result in the storm shifting from the coast as it brushes past the Outer Banks of North Carolina, the Met forecasters stated.
Earl has seemed to threaten the Transatlantic flights which some believe may be grounded over the next few days in order to mitigate the loss to life and property. As per the reports many airlines may cancel flights from New York and Boston, if the storm continues to spiral northwards. Continental Airlines has been quoted by the media resources as stating that storms were likely to hit air travel and the airline may be compelled to cancel flights from Newark.
Authorities and rescue agencies have evacuated thousands of people along the US east coast. The Red Cross as per the sources has been reported to be preparing to open shelters to protect public from the fury of the storm. These shelters on the Long Island can accommodate up to 60,000 people in the event of destruction of homes. Faced with the devastating fury of the imminent Earl, the local tourism industry is likely to get the worst hit and has already started to pre-assess the losses from the storm’s impact.