Hurricane Sandy hit Jamaica on Wednesday as a category 1 hurricane, the U.S. National Hurricane Center reported.
It battered much of the island with its 80-mph winds and torrential rains. Some communities have been cut off because of the flooding and mudslides that resulted from the immense amount of rain.
Cities on the hurricane's path are without power and the damage is beginning to pile up, a resident told the Miami Herald.
“Several trees have fallen and many houses have lost their roofs. And we are in darkness,” Pamella Simms said.
The National Hurricane Center said Sandy hit Jamaica around 3 p.m., and its path will take it over Cuba, the Bahamas and then Florida. Florida from the Middle Keys to Brevard County is under a tropical storm watch.
Forecasters say Sandy could turn into a nor’easter by next week and run up the U.S. East Coast, or miss it completely.
If the storm hits a day before Halloween, it could be devastating for the Northeast with coastal flooding, drenching rainfall, high winds, downed trees, power outages, travel mayhem and even snow in the Appalachians, according to AccuWeather meteorologist Alex Sosnowski.
Meteorologist James Cisco of the Hydrometeorological Prediction Center said in an online forecast the "chances are increasing for a major storm impacting the Mid-Atlantic and Northeast.”
But before Sandy gets to the Northeast it’s expected to hit the east coast of Florida around Thursday afternoon and evening, National Hurricane Center spokesman Dennis Feltgen said.
Sandy is the 18th tropical storm or hurricane to be named in the 2012 Atlantic hurricane season, which typically has about 12 named storms in an average season, the Associated Press noted.