Many in chilly New England mark eighth day without power

Posted Nov. 06, 2011, at 9:15 p.m.

HARTFORD, Conn. — Tens of thousands in the chilly Northeast remained without power Sunday night, eight days after a rare October snowstorm knocked much of the region into the dark.

Many marked another day without lights or heat, lingering at shopping malls, hitting the movies or bunking at friends’ homes as they faced the possibility of a new week without power.

In hardest hit Connecticut, more than 104,000 customers were still in the dark. Connecticut Light & Power, the state’s largest utility, held to its goal of restoring electricity to 99 percent of its customers by midnight.

New Jersey and Massachusetts each had about 4,000 people still waiting for the lights to come back on.

Elsewhere, companies in Maine and New Hampshire said customers affected by last weekend’s storm were back on line.

National Hurricane Center estimates more than 240 tropical systems missed between 1900 to 2002

FT. LAUDERDALE, Fla. — With less than a month remaining in it, 17 named storms have emerged so far this hurricane season, ensuring this will be one of the most active years on record. Yet five of those storms were so weak that a few decades ago they likely would have been overlooked.

Between 1900 and 2002, the National Hurricane Center estimates, it failed to identify more than 240 systems that might have been tropical storms but were mistakenly deemed too weak or went undetected because they were too far out in the ocean to be studied. Climatologists further guess that of those, 75 were hurricanes.

Thanks to the satellite era, which came full force in the mid-1970s, forecasters are able to better estimate the strength of even the most distant systems. In the past 35 years, they have spotted dozens of storms that previously would have been discounted, 18 in the past five years alone.

A major ramification of so many missed storms: 2005, thought to be the busiest season on record with 28 storms, might actually be second to 1933, when, officially, 21 storms were spotted.

US officials fear bomb attacks possible in Nigeria capital

LAGOS, Nigeria — After a weekend of violence and fear, U.S. officials warned Sunday that luxury hotels frequented by foreigners and Nigeria’s elite may be bombed by a radical Muslim sect as the death toll from attacks in the country’s northeast rose to more than 100.

The warning by the U.S. Embassy shows how seriously diplomats take the threat posed by the outlawed Islamist group known locally as Boko Haram, which previously bombed the United Nations headquarters in the capital, Abuja, killing 24.

The embassy said an attack may come as Muslims in the oil-rich nation celebrate the Eid al-Adha holiday and that its diplomats and staff had been instructed to avoid those hotels.

The warning came as a Nigerian Red Cross official said more than 100 people were killed in a series of attacks Friday in the northeast.

Syrian troops kill 11 despite Arab League accord

BEIRUT — Syrians in the restive region of Homs performed special prayers for a major Muslim holiday to the sound of explosions and gunfire as government troops pushed forward their assault on the area, killing at least 11 people Sunday, residents and activists said.

The violence on the first day of Eid al-Adha, or Feast of the Sacrifice, added to fears that a peace plan brokered by the Arab League last week was unraveling and prompted Qatar’s prime minister to call for an emergency meeting Saturday to discuss the Syrian government’s failure to abide by its commitments.

Violence has continued unabated, though Damascus agreed to halt its crackdown on the 7-month-old uprising that the U.N. says has left some 3,000 people dead.

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