A nor’easter that battered the U.S. coast with hurricane-force wind gusts has left 425,000 people without power in Massachusetts and forced the closure of bridges, ferries and schools in the region on Wednesday.
The Massachusetts Emergency Management Agency reported the widespread power outages Wednesday morning as areas along the coast experienced wind gusts of 80 mph to 90 mph. About 90,000 people lost power in Rhode Island according to National Grid.
The National Weather Service in Boston reported that travel is not recommended early this morning in southeast Massachusetts because of the hurricane-force wind gusts, numerous downed trees and power outages. The highest wind gust of the storm was recorded at 94 mph at a ferry dock on Martha's Vineyard it said. Winds are slowly diminishing throughout the day.
The Rhode Island Turnpike and Bridge Authority closed the Newport Pell and Jamestown Verrazzano Bridges due to wind gusts of 70 mph early Wednesday morning, then reopened them shortly after to most vehicles. School buses were still not permitted to cross. Ferry service to Martha's Vineyard and Nantucket was suspended Wednesday. Dozens of schools canceled classes.
The body of a kayaker who went missing off Long Island was recovered near the Bronx after being spotted by a helicopter search crew, Coast Guard officials said Tuesday. Broderick reportedly left Hempstead at about 9 p.m. Monday, a few hours before heavy rain started falling in the region, and was headed to Mamaroneck. He was reported missing early Tuesday morning.
The storm brought heavy rain and gusts late Tuesday and intensifying into Wednesday. The early nor’easter arrived before many trees have shed their leaves for the winter, increasingly the likelihood of power outages as branches covered in wet, heavy leaves blow onto transmission lines.
The storm, which is expected to be felt as far north as Nova Scotia, drenched the mid-Atlantic on Tuesday.