New Jersey residents brace themselves for Hurricane Joaquin
Hurricane Joaquin revved up in strength Wednesday and turned into a Category 4 storm on Wednesday night, according to weather.com. As of midnight Friday, meteorologists predict Joaquin will turn away from New Jersey before Monday.
A Category 4 storm, which could promise sustained winds of 130 to 155 miles per hour and severe damage to property, humans and animals, often comes with long-term power and water outages lasting from a few weeks to few months.
“It’s very hard to predict at this point where this storm will go,” Alan F. Blumberg, director of the Center for Maritime Systems at Stevens Institute of Technology in Hoboken, told The Bergen Record. “Whatever happens, people should be paying attention.”
Gov. Chris Christie issued a state of emergency on Oct. 1, and said he would evacuate four counties in South Jersey if the hurricane escalated.
“We’re prepared, and we need you to prepare and not panic,” Christie said. “We are not quite sure whether this is gonna be a single punch or a double punch. There’s no question there’s gonna be a single punch.”
Despite Christie’s caution, meteorologists aren’t so assured of how severe Joaquin will be.
“We have absolutely no idea where it’s going,” said David Robinson, New Jersey state climatologist and a professor in the Department of Geography.
Regardless, New Jersey is bracing itself for the storm.
The Asbury Park Press released a list of 22 gas stations equipped with backup generators or quick connections, for individuals who may lose power during the hurricane.
All 22 gas stations located in plazas on the Garden State Parkway, the New Jersey Turnpike and the Atlantic City Expressway are equipped, according to the state. Other stations include the Quick Chek at 1170 Route 36 in Hazlet, Quick Chek at 450 Route 36 in Highlands, Quick Chek at 768 Route 9 South in Berkeley, Petro in Middletown, PMG in Toms River, Gill Petroleum in Lakewood, Petro in Aberdeen, PMG in Brick, Exxon on Route 9 in Morganville and Exxon on Route 88 in Lakewood.