Sandy Restored To Category 1 Hurricane

The National Weather Service has upgraded Sandy from a tropical storm to a hurricane and warns that "widespread impacts" are expected into next week for the U.S. East Coast. The storm was expected to increase in speed and move away from the Bahamas and parallel to the southeast coast of the United States later this weekend.

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SCOTT SIMON, HOST:

And this morning, we're following the progression of a major storm, hurricane Sandy, which is turning toward parts of the mid-Atlantic and Northeast. The National Hurricane Center briefly downgraded Sandy to a tropical storm, but this morning restored it to a category one hurricane. Parts of the east coast are bracing for destructive winds and heavy flooding once Sandy makes landfall in the coming days.

Storm is already blamed for at least 43 deaths across the Caribbean and some forecasters say it could be wider and stronger than the worst East Coast storm on record. And hurricane Sandy is upending election activities, too. Both Mitt Romney and Vice President Joe Biden have cancelled scheduled appearances this weekend in Virginia. The storm could also hamper early voting in several states and overshadow the candidates' final arguments in these final days of the presidential campaign of 2012.

Please stay with NPR and NPR.org for the latest on hurricane Sandy's progression.

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