As hurricane season ends, Sandy powers up off East Coast

As hurricane season ends, Sandy powers up off East Coast
Hurricane Sandy is gaining strength over the pacific, as seen in this radar image from KATU's new VIPIR weather system.

The official end of the Hurricane season is a week from Thursday, don't tell that to Hurricane Sandy. The powerful storm continues to grow in strength.

It’s currently over the Atlantic Ocean with winds speeds of 105 miles per hour.

Over the next couple of days Sandy is going to cook over the warm waters of the Atlantic and by late this coming weekend and early part of next week, it’s expected to make landfall along the East Coast anywhere from North Carolina to New York City.

Early forecast models have it making landfall early Monday in New York with wind speeds up to 80 miles per hour. That would make it a category 1 hurricane.

Rainfall amounts could be between five and 10 inches.

Compounding the problem, a cold front coming down from Canada at the same time could bring several inches of snow to parts of the East Coast and even as far south as parts of Georgia.

With experts expecting at least $1 billion in damage, the people who will have to clean it up aren't waiting.

Utilities are lining up out-of-state work crews and canceling employees' days off to deal with the power outages. From county disaster chiefs to the federal government, emergency officials are warning the public to be prepared. And President Barack Obama was briefed aboard Air Force One.

"It's looking like a very serious storm that could be historic," said Jeff Masters, meteorology director of the forecasting service Weather Underground. "Mother Nature is not saying 'trick-or-treat.' It's just going to give tricks."

National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration forecaster Jim Cisco, who coined the nickname Frankenstorm, said: "We don't have many modern precedents for what the models are suggesting."

The Associated Press contributed to this report