Nothing says Zombie Apocalypse in New York City like live images of the floor of the New York Stock Exchange and Grand Central Station deserted on a Monday morning.
As approximately 50 million Americans brace for superstorm Hurricane Sandy (a.k.a. Frankenstorm) tension mounts because of the storm's increasing speed — with top sustained winds likely to reach 75 by the time the storm rips through downtown Manhattan.
So far, the Category 1 hurricane is moving northwest at 20 mph. This morning, Sandy was spotted at about 310 miles south-southeast of New York City and hurricane-like winds reached to 175 miles from the storm's center.
As of this morning, Sandy was seen over coastal North Carolina, southeastern Virginia, the Delmarva Peninsula and coastal New Jersey. It has been reported that, even before its landfall, fierce winds have already cut power to about 24,000 people in several states. Wind gusts of 38 mph and 41 mph have already been reported in New York City and Boston.
The storm is likely going to strengthen by the time it approaches the East Coast on Monday afternoon. Authorities fear that flooding could be a big threat, as they expect to see rainfall accumulating between 5 and 8 inches over a 48-hour period.
Federal Emergency Management Administrator, Craig Fugate, told CBS News, "there's a lot of people that are going to be under the impacts of this." He added, though, that the major concern are the people in the evacuation areas and whether they'll evacuate voluntarily or stay and face the danger (forecasters are warning that the New York area could get the worst of the storm, an estimated 11-foot wall of water).
Sandy/Frankenstorm could rip Monday night or early Tuesday through the New Jersey coast, then cut across into Pennsylvania and travel up through New York State on Wednesday.