Hurricane Dorian – After Devastating the Northern Bahamas, Nears the Southeastern United States

At 3:00 PM AST, the center of Hurricane Dorian was located near latitude 30.2 North, longitude 79.8 West. Dorian is moving toward the north-northwest near 15 KM/H and this motion is expected to continue this afternoon.

A turn toward the northeast is anticipated by tonight, and a northeastward motion at a faster forward speed is forecast on Friday. On the forecast track, the center of Dorian will continue to move close to the coast of South Carolina today and then move near or over the coast of North Carolina tonight and Friday. The center should move to the southeast of extreme southeastern New England Friday night and Saturday morning, and approach Nova Scotia later on Saturday.

Forecast Cone for Hurricane Dorian
Forecast Cone for Hurricane Dorian

Maximum sustained winds are near 165 KM/H with higher gusts. Slow weakening is expected during the next few days. However, Hurricane Dorian is expected to remain a powerful hurricane during this time.

Hurricane-force winds extend outward up to 110 Kilometers from the center and tropical-storm-force winds extend outward up to 280 kilometers

A Weatherflow station at Huguenot Park, Florida, recently reported sustained winds of 65 KM/H and a wind gust of 87 KM/H. NOAA buoy 41008, located off the Georgia coast, recently reported sustained winds of 79 KM/H and a wind gust of 90 KM/H.

The minimum central pressure just reported by an Air Force Reserve Hurricane Hunter aircraft is 964 millibars.

Watches & Warnings

Watches and Warnings in effect for Hurricane Dorian
Watches and Warnings in effect for Hurricane Dorian

A Storm Surge Warning is in effect for:

  • North of Port Canaveral FL to the North Carolina/Virginia border
  • Pamlico and Albemarle Sounds
  • Neuse and Pamlico Rivers

A Storm Surge Warning means there is a danger of life-threatening inundation, from rising water moving inland from the coastline, during the next 36 hours in the indicated locations.

This is a life-threatening situation. Persons located within these areas should take all necessary actions to protect life and property from rising water and the potential for other dangerous conditions. Promptly follow evacuation and other instructions from local officials.

A Storm Surge Watch is in effect for:

  • North Carolina/Virginia border to Poquoson VA, including Hampton
    Roads

A Storm Surge Watch means there is a possibility of life-threatening inundation, from rising water moving inland from the coastline, in the indicated locations during the next 48 hours.

A Hurricane Warning is in effect for:

  • North of Savannah River to the North Carolina/Virginia border
  • Albemarle and Pamlico Sounds

A Hurricane Warning means that hurricane conditions are expected somewhere within the warning area. Preparations to protect life and property should be rushed to completion.

A Hurricane Watch is in effect for:

  • North of Ponte Vedra Beach FL to Savannah River

A Hurricane Watch means that hurricane conditions are possible within the watch area. A watch is typically issued 48 hours before the anticipated first occurrence of tropical-storm-force winds, conditions that make outside preparations difficult or dangerous.

A Tropical Storm Warning is in effect for:

  • Volusia/Brevard County FL line to Savannah River

A Tropical Storm Warning means that tropical storm conditions are expected within the warning area within 36 hours.

A Tropical Storm Watch is in effect for:

  • The North Carolina/Virginia border to Chincoteague VA
  • The Chesapeake Bay from Smith Point southward

A Tropical Storm Watch means that tropical storm conditions are possible within the watch area, generally within 48 hours.

Interests elsewhere along the Mid-Atlantic Coast of the United States should continue to monitor the progress of Hurricane Dorian, as additional watches or warnings may be required later today. Interests in southeastern New England should also monitor the progress of the hurricane.

Hazards Affecting Land

Wind: Tropical storm conditions are currently affecting portions of the northeastern coast of Florida, and should begin along the Georgia coast during the next several hours.

Tropical storm conditions will begin within the Hurricane Warning area in the Carolinas later today, with hurricane conditions by late tonight and Thursday.

Storm Surge: The combination of a dangerous storm surge and the tide will cause normally dry areas near the coast to be flooded by rising waters moving inland from the shoreline. The water could reach the following heights above ground somewhere in the indicated areas if the peak surge occurs at the time of high tide:

  • Isle of Palms to Myrtle Beach SC – 5 to 8 ft
  • Savannah River to Isle of Palms SC – 4 to 7 ft
  • Myrtle Beach SC to Cape Lookout NC – 4 to 7 ft
  • Cape Lookout NC to Duck NC, including Pamlico and Albemarle Sounds and the Neuse and Pamlico Rivers – 4 to 6 ft
  • Volusia/Brevard County Line FL to Savannah River – 3 to 5 ft
  • North of Port Canaveral FL to Volusia/Brevard County Line FL – 2 to 4 ft
  • Duck NC to Poquoson VA, including Hampton Roads – 2 to 4 ft

Water levels could begin to rise well in advance of the arrival of strong winds. The surge will be accompanied by large and destructive waves. Surge-related flooding depends on how close the center of Dorian comes to the coast, and can vary greatly over short distances.

Rainfall: Hurricane Dorian is expected to produce the following rainfall
totals through Friday:

  • Coastal Carolinas – 5 to 10 inches, isolated 15 inches.
  • Atlantic Coast from Daytona Beach, Florida to the Georgia-South Carolina border – 3 to 6 inches, with isolated 9 inches near the Georgia coast.
  • Southeast Virginia – 3 to 6 inches.

This rainfall may cause life-threatening flash floods.

Seas: Large swells will affect the northwestern Bahamas, and the entire southeastern United States coast from Florida through North Carolina during the next several days. These swells are likely to cause life-threatening surf and rip current conditions. Please consult products from your local weather office.

Tornadoes: A tornado or two are possible along the immediate coast of Georgia this afternoon. Isolated tornadoes are possible from this evening through Thursday across the coastal Carolinas.


This tropical storm is of no threat to the Lesser Antilles, including Trinidad and Tobago.

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