Mark Wilson, Getty Images


New York, New Jersey and other coastal states announced evacuations of citizens living in low-lying coastal areas on Sunday, as Hurricane Sandy and an accompanying storm surge threatened the East Coast of the United States. The National Hurricane Center plotted the center of the storm 300 miles southeast of Virginia Beach, Virginia, on Sunday night. Still a Category 1 hurricane, Sandy was moving northeast at about 15 mph, bringing with it maximum sustained winds of 75 mph. It was projected to make landfall on Monday evening.

Sandy’s impact area was nearly 1,000 miles across, making the storm one of the largest hurricanes to ever hit the Eastern U.S. Storm warnings were issued from the Carolinas to New England.

In addition to its high winds and driving, soaking rains, Hurricane Sandy could create a storm surge of 6 to 11 feet in places nearest the New York metropolitan area and Long Island. Power outages and flooding are possible in any communities that fall within the path of the storm.

New York Governor Andrew Cuomo — in conjunction with New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg — announced all Mass Transit Authority service would be suspended at 7 p.m. (ET) Sunday, meaning the nation’s largest mass transit system would cease subway, bus and rail service until further notice. New Jersey Governor Chris Christie announced his state’s transit system would suspend service at 12:01 a.m. (ET) Monday. Philadelphia announced it will suspend all public transit at the end of normal service on Sunday night.

The U.S. Office of Personnel Management announced federal offices in Washington D.C. will be closed to the public on Monday because of Hurricane Sandy. President Barack Obama and Republican presidential nominee Mitt Romney canceled campaign events in Virginia.

[CNN]