Hurricane Dorian is expected to bring damaging winds and life-threatening storm surges along a large portion of the southeast and mid-Atlantic coasts of the United States during the next couple of days, The resort town Hilton Head Islands recorded some minor damage.
1. Life-threatening storm surge and dangerous winds are expected along portions the coasts of Georgia, South Carolina, and North Carolina, and portions of southeast Virginia and the southern Chesapeake Bay, regardless of the exact track of Dorian’s center. Water levels could rise well in advance of the arrival of strong winds. Residents in these areas should follow advice given by local emergency officials.
2. Flash flooding will become increasingly likely across coastal Georgia into the eastern Carolinas overnight. On Thursday, there is a high risk of flash flooding over coastal sections of the Carolinas, where significant, life-threatening, flash flooding is expected.
At 200 AM EDT (0600 UTC), the eye of Hurricane Dorian was located near latitude 31.4 North, longitude 79.6 West. Dorian is moving toward the north near 7 mph (11 km/h). A turn to the north-northeast is anticipated today, with a turn toward the northeast tonight. A northeastward motion at a faster forward speed is forecast on Friday. On the forecast track, the center of Dorian will continue to approach the coast of South Carolina this morning, move near or over the coast of South Carolina later today, and then move near or over the coast of North Carolina tonight and Friday. Maximum sustained winds are near 115 mph (185 km/h) with higher gusts. Dorian is a category 3 hurricane on the Saffir-Simpson Hurricane Wind Scale. Some fluctuations in intensity are expected this morning, followed by slow weakening through Saturday. Hurricane-force winds extend outward up to 60 miles (95 km) from the center, and tropical-storm-force winds extend outward up to 195 miles (315 km). A sustained wind of 49 mph (79 km/h) with a gust to 57 mph (92 km/h) was recently reported at Winyah Bay, South Carolina. The minimum central pressure reported by an Air Force plane was 957 mb (28.26 inches).
Hurricane Dorian has intensified back into a Category 3 hurricane with sustained winds of 115 mph and much higher gusts, while the storms minimum central pressure has fallen back to 957 mb.
Hurricane Dorian is likely to fluctuate in strength over the coming hours, while the path is expected to wobble very close to the Carolinas coasts and the NHC warns of “life-threatening storm surge and dangerous winds” while meteorologists expect inches of rainfall and flooding for some coastal areas.
The Category hurricanes that made landfall in Georgia and the Carolinas caused between $2 billion and $7.6 billion in insurance and reinsurance market losses.
Satellite imagery indicated that the cloud pattern associated with Dorian was a little better organized with a clear eye surrounded by a ring of very deep convection. This trend was confirmed with data from both NOAA and Air Force reconnaissance planes, which measured a minimum central pressure of 955 mb. SFMR and flight-level winds support an initial intensity of 100 kt. In fact, Dvorak numbers also call for 100 kt. Dorian could maintain this intensity for about 12 hours or so, but guidance is showing shear increasing, and that should result in gradual weakening. The intensity forecast is basically the same as the previous advisory, keeping Dorian at the border of category 2 or 3 intensity as it moves near the southeast coast of the United States. This forecast is consistent with the intensity models, which unanimously gradually weaken the cyclone. On the other hand, the wind field is expected to gradually expand during the next several days until the cyclone becomes extratropical near Atlantic Canada. Aircraft fixes yield a northward motion or 010 degrees at 6 kt. Dorian is already recurving as it is becoming steered by the south- southwesterly flow ahead of an eastward-moving mid-level trough. The track guidance is tightly clustered, and the NHC forecast follows very closely the multi-model consensus. No significant change to the previous track forecast was necessary. The forecast motion should bring the core of Dorian near the coast of South Carolina during the next 6 to 12 hours and over the Outer Banks of North Carolina between 24 and 36 hours. Since the NHC track prediction continues to take Dorian dangerously close to the southeast U.S. coast, all interests from Georgia to the Carolinas should remain vigilant to the possibility of experiencing destructive winds, flooding rains, and life- threatening storm surges from this hurricane.