Dorian to threaten landfall in Carolinas as it slowly moves up coast with damaging winds, heavy rain

181
- Advertisement -

AccuWeather meteorologists continue to believe that the center of Dorian will remain east of Florida, but have concerns for a direct strike on the Carolinas and significant impact is in store for coastal areas even if landfall is avoided.

Texas Border Business

AccuWeather Global Weather Center – September 2,2019 – States of emergency have been declared and millions are facing evacuation orders from Georgia to North Carolina as dangerous Hurricane Dorian, a Category 4 storm, continues to grow in size. After paralleling the Florida Atlantic coast during the first part of this week, Dorian is forecast to turn northeastward and parallel the Carolina coast with battering winds, pounding waves and torrential rain later this week.

AccuWeather meteorologists continue to believe that the center of Dorian will remain east of Florida, but have concerns for a direct strike on the Carolinas and significant impact is in store for coastal areas even if landfall is avoided.

“Even though Dorian is forecast to gradually lose intensity near the eye, the hurricane will gradually grow in girth in the coming days,” according to AccuWeather Hurricane Expert Dan Kottlowski. “This means that the areal extent of hurricane and tropical storm conditions will increase as Dorian encounters the United States.” 


This trend began over the Bahamas this past weekend and will continue until the storm moves over the cold waters of the North Atlantic during the upcoming weekend. Dorian will remain an ordeal for residents, visitors, officials, shipping and cruise interests much of this week along the Atlantic seaboard.

“People are urged to heed evacuation orders when issued,” Kottlowski said.

Preparations to protect property need to be completed as soon as possible. Small craft should be secured in port. Cruise and shipping interests should avoid the path of Dorian.

- Advertisement -

Storm surge and flooding rainfall are the leading causes of fatalities as a hurricane approaches land.

“People can expect a storm surge of 4-7 feet with locally higher inundation from east-central Florida to southeastern Virginia associated with Dorian,” Kottlowski said.

While a waterspout or tornado can occur anywhere in the spiral bands of the hurricane, the greatest risk will be in the northeastern quadrant of the storm as it nears the coast in North Carolina.

What can Florida, southeastern Georgia expect?

Over the Florida Peninsula and southeastern Georgia, people should expect hurricane conditions with strong sustained winds, powerful gusts and torrential rain to develop and spread northward from Interstate 95 eastward, starting near West Palm Beach, Florida, and expanding through Savannah, Georgia, during the first half of this week.

This is expected, even though the center of Dorian is likely to remain offshore.

It is possible that the outer eyewall with Category 2-3 hurricane conditions may brush Cape Canaveral, Florida, on Tuesday, with widespread power outages and considerable urban and coastal flooding.

The coastal flooding will be greatest around the inlets, back bays and Intercoastal Waterway.

Tropical storm conditions with sporadic power outages and isolated urban flooding are possible as far west as U.S. Routes 27 and 301 in Florida and Georgia.

Rainfall of 4-8 inches with an AccuWeather StormMax™ of 12 inches is forecast for the immediate upper Atlantic coast of Florida and the Georgia coast.

Carolinas, especially North Carolina, still at risk for a direct hit

Depending on exactly how close to the coast the storm tracks, the eye may make landfall along North Carolina’s capes Fear, Lookout and Hatteras.

The current AccuWeather RealImpact™ Scale for Hurricanes for Dorian is a 5 on the Bahamas but a 2 on the mainland U.S.

While the Dorian will lose some intensity due to friction of the large landmass of North America and increasing wind shear, the hurricane may track so close that a slight shift in the track or wobbles with the center may result in multiple landfalls in North Carolina.

Dorian is forecast to slowly weaken along much of its route from Florida waters to North Carolina waters. The hurricane is likely to be a Category 3 off the northeastern Florida coast on Tuesday night and a Category 1 near Cape Hatteras during Friday morning.

During the middle to latter part of this week, the hurricane is forecast to increase its forward speed.

Click on these links for Historical Hurricane Graphics:

Historical graphic featuring strongest hurricanes in Atlantic basin:

http://pro.accuweather.com/adcbin/professional/uggfx/page.htm?gfxcode=hd27

Historical graphic featuring most intense hurricanes at landfall (pressure):

http://pro.accuweather.com/adcbin/professional/uggfx/page.htm?gfxcode=hd28

Historical graphic featuring most intense hurricanes at landfall (wind speed):

http://pro.accuweather.com/adcbin/professional/uggfx/page.htm?gfxcode=hd30

- Advertisement -