MIAMI (AP) -- Forecasters say Sandy has again reached hurricane strength, with sustained winds of 75 mph.
The National Hurricane Center in Miami said Saturday morning that a Hurricane Hunter aircraft found Sandy had sustained winds powerful enough to upgrade it to a Category 1 hurricane. It had been downgraded to a tropical storm just hours earlier.
Regardless of its official category, Sandy is expected to be a monstrous storm that poses a serious threat for the entire Eastern Seaboard.
Forecasters say Sandy is a massive cyclone, with hurricane-force winds recorded as far as 100 miles away from the eye of the storm.
Tropical storm conditions could be felt in the Carolinas by Saturday evening.
Up and down the East Coast, residents are stocking up on supplies and utilities are lining up extra crews in preparation for the storm barreling north from the Caribbean.
Hurricane Sandy is expected to make landfall early Tuesday near the Delaware coast. It's forecast to collide with two winter weather systems as it moves inland, creating a hybrid monster storm that could bring nearly a foot of rain, high winds and up to 2 feet of snow.
Experts say the storm could be stronger than Hurricane Irene and hit many of the same places as the devastating storm last year.
In Bloomsburg, Pa., Heather Peters and her husband bought a kerosene heater, 12 gallons of water, paper plates, batteries, flashlights and a lantern. She says, "I'm not screwing around this time."