Storm warning

Before the nor'easter arrived, the Massachusetts Department of Transportation placed a sign on Beach Road in Salisbury, warning about the storm and urging people to plan ahead.

The storm bearing down on the region Friday morning brought strong winds, the onset of coastal flooding and some power outages in the Merrimack Valley and Southern New Hampshire.

Officials warned that as the storm intensifies, more power outages are expected, primarily due to strong winds that will drop tree limbs onto power lines.

A high wind warning is in effect from 10 a.m. Friday morning to 7 a.m. Saturday in northeastern and south central Massachusetts, as well as in New Hampshire, with gusts up to 70 mph possible.

According to the Massachusetts Emergency Management Agency, 4,500 homes and businesses across the state lost power Friday morning, including about 100 people in Methuen.

According to National Grid's online power outage map, the power loss in Methuen is affecting 105 customers on parts of Maple Street and Copley and Balmoral drives.

Eversource, a provider of electricity in New Hampshire, reported minimal outages Friday morning, saying about 15 homes in Londonderry were affected.

Meteorologists at the National Weather Service in Taunton, Massachusetts, said the strongest winds can be expected Friday afternoon, likely leading to more power outages from downed trees and power lines across the region.

Meteoroglist James Brown of the National Weather Service in Gray, Maine, mentioned high wind warnings extending from the coast further inland.

"The wind will be with us for a considerably long time," Brown said, "as well as some flood warnings along the coastline through midnight."

With a high tide coming up just before noon, another one around midnight and yet another one Saturday afternoon, most of the flooding concern is centered around the coastline, according to meteorologists in Massachusetts and New Hampshire.

On Thursday, officials said they were anticipating a preliminary storm surge of three feet with waves between 20 and 30 feet high just off the shore of Newburyport and surrounding communities.

Officials said evacuations may become necessary for some shoreline neighborhoods in Newburyport, Newbury and Salisbury. Emergency officials urged voluntary evacuations of Plum Island and Salisbury residential areas along the beach Thursday.

Coupled with the high tides, there's potential for property damage in areas prone to coastal flooding, including Plum Island. State officials are also predicting severe beach erosion.

Watch for continuing coverage of the storm.

Reporters Breanna Edelstein, Zoe Mathews, Lisa Kashinsky and Amanda Getchell contributed to this report.

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