By Mark Abrams

TRENTON, N.J. (CBS) — New Jersey Governor Chris Christie was still pleading this afternoon with residents of New Jersey’s barrier coastal islands, saying they could place their lives and their families at risk if they don’t leave.

Speaking at a briefing in Trenton, the governor said extensive flooding already is taking place along the barrier islands. And when Sandy hits full force later tonight, he says, it could put people at risk who decided to ride out the storm.

“Right now, the most important thing is to save lives. We do not want to have significant loss of life in this storm. There is the real chance we could have that if people aren’t following instructions. So, we need folks to follow instructions. We need folks to be on top of things and we need folks to remain calm,” the governor said.

Christie says several roads are being closed in the state because of flooding along the coast. He says he has more than 1,100 airmen and National Guard troops activated, and they have put out high-water vehicles as well as helicopters, into position to respond to the storm and its aftermath.

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