[Image of 5-day forecast and coastal areas under a warning or a watch]

Personally, I love it when the major media whips into a frenzy trying to out-do each other on ridiculous names for storms – be it hurricanes, snowstorms, whatever.

Frankenstorm is definitely going down as one of my favorites.

Frank·en·storm (noun): Dubbed a “super storm,” and by those in media who try too hard, and yet, somehow, not hard enough, as a “perfect storm,” a Frankenstorm is the potentially catastrophic merging of Hurricane Sandy with a large snowstorm and high-tides due to a full moon, and, of course, the important ingredient of occurring on the days surrounding Halloween, to further justify the “Franken” in Frankenstorm.

Pure genius. I hope whoever came up with “Frankenstorm” gets a huge raise and a hug.

Despite all the lunacy surrounding Sandy the Frankenstorm, it’s one to watch. Barreling up from Cuba and the Bahamas, up the east coast, the Category 1 (current status) hurricane has already taken more than 30 lives and caused millions of dollars in damage. It’s expected to further weaken as it works its way up – staying over water – to North Carolina, where it will collide with the snowstorm and veer inland, coming ashore anywhere from Chesapeake Bay up to Long Island or lower New England.

Government forecasters say there’s now a 90 percent chance the East will take a beating, up from 60 percent just two days ago.

Now, some news outlets are doing their best to panic the public. Daily News quoted all the ripe parts of government warnings. Here’s one of their leads:

Hurricane Sandy has the potential to be one of the worst storms  in New York City history, with major flooding and sustained winds of up to 80 mph for at least 24 hours,  says Jerome Hauer, Gov. Cuomo’s Division of Homeland Security commissionerr..

New York could face even worse storm surge flooding  than was anticipated during Hurricane Irene last year and the evacuation of parts of the city susceptible to flooding could be possible, Hauer said. Such decisions could be made by mid-day Saturday, he said.

There’s a lot of “could be” and “potential” and even some “likely” scattered about the article, but one thing the government official makes clear – there are a lot of unknowns at the moment, and hurricanes – like any storm – can take some unpredictable tacks.

All of that is to cut through the media hype for you. But do not get me wrong on this. PREPARE.

Too often when storms like this haul ass towards New York City, neighbors start spouting off conspiracy theories. “Oh, it’s all for ratings,” or “They just want you to buy stuff to help the economy.” Take a look at your Facebook feed. If you didn’t post a message like this yourself, I bet plenty of your friends did.

Listen. Don’t go crazy. Don’t panic. But do prepare. Sheepshead Bay and Southern Brooklyn – as you’ll remember from Hurricane Irene – are within the flood zone and are evacuation areas.

We got lucky with Irene. We may not this time.

Read the Office of Emergency Management’s tip sheet for hurricanes, with locations of evacuation centers, checklist for your go bag, and more. And don’t wait for the last minute – it won’t hurt you to have this stuff at the ready anyway.

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  • Tuth

    Frankenstorm sounds like the name of a really bad SciFi channel movie.

  • Anon

    Obviously be cautious but forecasts this far in advance are rarely accurate. It will likely be taken west by oceanic current and make landfall in North Carolina where it will weaken and cause residual rains for us Monday night/Tues morning. Naturally NYC gov is over-reacting as it’s their policy after the winter 2010 clusterfuck but like I said being cautious is the preferred course of action.

    • Tinman

      Do you work for the NWC? How do you know the track of the storm when forecasters have issued at least two or three scenarios that contradict yours? The heavy rains are expected Monday into Tuesday, not as you forecast.
      Nonetheless, better to be safe and overreact than sorry when Sandy strikes! If warnings were minimized and we got hit, you know the gripes and complaints would pile up quicker than fallen trees.

    • Ann

      Isn’t the jet stream going to make it more intense when it hits land, instead of the normal hurricane weakening when it hits land?

  • sam

    Well there goes my trip to Stop n’ Shop this weekend. It’s sure to be a madhouse with people buying 400 flashlights per household. Honestly – the flashlight panic I do not get…doesn’t everybody already own a flashlight????

    • Tinman

      Stop & Shop will be mobbed tomorrow as if it was the end of the world. You can bet some essential items will be gone by late in the day.

  • JR

    does anyone know what the potential storm surge even is right now? thanks

  • Psychosis all Night

    wow , another flood this will be the 5th time this year.. time to gtfo of this shithole neighborhood filled with a bunch of retards anyway

    • sam

      Next time don’t choose to live in a neighborhood that is so close to the water. Kind of comes with the territory.

      • nolastname

        No Sam, this is new to the territory. When I moved here from Park Slope 50 years ago there was never a worry of being washed away.
        It has been for the last 10-20 years that the insurance companies have been refusing or raping homeowners for flood insurance,

    • nolastname

      Yeah, and soon you will learn how to speak. Don’t let the door hit you on the way out.

  • nolastname

    Lisanne and I were there at about 8am today. Wish I had their paychecks, time and a half or double and a half. Moving sand like there was no tomorrow……..

  • Guttr

    Ahhh, here we go again — how long before Mayor Mikey orders us lowly SB residents to evacuate? Well, I ain’t leaving. I sat out Hurricane Juan, which hit Cat 3 status, in Nova Scotia, so this puny storm doesn’t scare me. But the limp-wristed, finger-wagging “better safe than sorry” crowd bailed Mikey out over his Irene overreaction, so I’m sure he’ll go for the same strategy this time.

  • raylotekka

    No way in hell I’m evacuating — I did that last year, for Irene. It was unnecessary