At a Glance

  • Dorian’s outer rainbands are lashing central Florida’s east coast and southeast Georgia.
  • Coastal flooding and beach erosion has already occurred along the east coast of Florida.
  • Hurricane and storm surge warnings are posted from Florida’s east coast to eastern North Carolina.
  • Conditions will worsen along the Georgia and South Carolina coasts Wednesday.
  • Peak impacts will arrive in North Carolina and southeastern Virginia Thursday into Friday.
  • Dorian could then strike Atlantic Canada as a post-tropical storm this weekend.

Hurricane Dorian is lashing the northeast coast of Florida and will soon begin its siege of storm surge flooding, high winds and flooding rain from Georgia to South Carolina, North Carolina and southeast Virginia.

Dorian’s maximum winds have backed off from Sunday’s peak, currently a Category 2hurricane. Regardless, Dorian will have significant, damaging impacts near and along the Southeast coast through Friday.

(INTERACTIVE: Current Radar, Satellite)

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Current Storm Status

(The highest cloud tops, corresponding to the most vigorous convection, are shown in the brightest red colors. Clustering, deep convection around the center is a sign of a healthy tropical cyclone.)

Dorian’s wind field has now grown larger, despite its somewhat lower winds. Tropical-storm-force winds (39-plus mph) now extend up to 175 miles from the eye, while hurricane-force winds (74-plus mph) extend up to 60 miles from the eye.

Sustained tropical-storm-force winds (39-plus mph) arrived at Juno Beach, Florida, Monday afternoon and continue along parts of the northeast Florida coast, with gusts topping 60 mph at times.

In central Florida, Indian River reported a sustained wind of 40 mph with a gust of 51 mph Tuesday evening. A 69-mph wind gust was clocked at New Smyrna Beach early Wednesday morning.

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Current Winds

Dorian has already had destructive impacts on parts of the Florida coast.

Major beach erosion already occurred Tuesday at Flagler Beach, according to the National Weather Service. The Weather Channel meteorologist Jim Cantore documented damage to homes on Hutchinson Island due to pounding surf.

Jim Cantore

@JimCantore

Homes along MacArthur Boulevard on Hutchinson Island dealing with damage from the ocean waves created by . This occurred last night at high tide. Next hide tide around 3pm today. Expect more issues and water rise along waterways in Martin County.

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Water levels were 3 inches over the seawall at Palm Coast Wednesday morning.

Major beach erosion has also been reported in Vero Beach, according to WKMG-TV. Flooding of streets and parking lots was reported on barrier islands near Ft. Pierce at high tide just after midnight early Wednesday.

Outer rainbands continue to wrap into Florida and southeast Georgia, and will increasingly do so near the coasts of the Carolinas. Along with heavy rain and stronger winds gusts, rotating cells within these bands are capable of spawning short-lived, fast-moving tornadoes.

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Current Radar, Watches and Warnings

(Watches and warnings are issued by the National Weather Service.)

Watches and Warnings

Here is a rundown of the current watches and warnings, according to the National Hurricane Center:

Storm Surge Warning

Sebastian Inlet, Florida, to Surf City, North Carolina

-This includes Daytona Beach, Florida; Jacksonville Beach, Florida; St. Simons Island, Georgia; Tybee Island, Georgia; Charleston, South Carolina; Myrtle Beach, South Carolina; and Wilmington, North Carolina.

-A storm surge warning means there is a danger of life-threatening inundation, from rising water moving inland from the coastline, within the warning area during the next 36 hours. If you live in an area prone to storm surge, be sure to follow the advice of local officials if evacuations are ordered.

Storm Surge Watch

North of Surf City, North Carolina, to Poquoson, Virginia, including Hampton Roads

-Pamlico and Albemarle Sounds, as well as the Neuse and Pamlico Rivers of eastern North Carolina

-This includes North Carolina’s Outer Banks, Norfolk and Virginia Beach, Virginia.

-A storm surge watch means that a life-threatening inundation is possible within the watch area during the next 48 hours.

Hurricane warning

-Volusia/Brevard County line, Florida, to Ponte Vedra Beach, Florida

-The entire South Carolina coast to Surf City, North Carolina

-This includes Hilton Head Island, Charleston and Myrtle Beach, South Carolina; and Wilmington, North Carolina.

-A hurricane warning means hurricane-force winds (74-plus mph) are either already occurring or expected somewhere within the warning area, generally within 36 hours. Preparations to protect life and property should be rushed to completion.

Hurricane watch

-North of Ponte Vedra Beach, Florida, to the Savannah River at the border between Georgia and South Carolina

-North of Surf City, North Carolina, to the North Carolina/Virginia border

-Albemarle and Pamlico sounds in eastern North Carolina

-This watch includes Savannah, Georgia, and the Outer Banks of North Carolina.

-A hurricane watch means hurricane-force winds are possible within the watch area. It is generally posted 48 hours before the first tropical-storm-force winds (39-plus mph) are expected.

Tropical storm warning

-Sebastian Inlet, Florida, to the Volusia/Brevard County line, Florida

-North of Ponte Vedra Beach, Florida, to the Savannah River at the border between Georgia and South Carolina

-This warning also extends inland, including the Jacksonville and Orlando metro areas, as well as other inland locations in eastern Georgia, eastern South Carolina and southeast North Carolina.

-A tropical storm warning means tropical-storm-force winds (at least 39 mph) are expected within 36 hours.

Tropical storm watch

-The North Carolina/Virginia border to Chincoteague, Virginia

-Chesapeake Bay from Smith Point southward

-This includes Norfolk, Virginia, and other inland location of southeast Virginia and eastern North Carolina.

-A tropical storm watch means tropical-storm-force winds are possible within 48 hours.

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Watches and Warnings

(A watch is issued when tropical storm or hurricane conditions are possible within 48 hours. A warning is issued when those conditions are expected within 36 hours.)

Below is the latest on Dorian’s timing and what we know about potential forecast impacts right now.

Dorian’s Forecast Timing

Wednesday: Dorian will move north-northwest off the coasts of northeast Florida and Georgia. Coastal flooding will worsen along the Georgia and South Carolina coasts, particularly at high tide. Battering waves will lead to beach erosion as large swells impact the coast up to North Carolina. Damaging winds are possible in the hurricane-warned areas in Florida, and possible in hurricane-warned areas of the Carolinas by night. Local rainfall flooding is also a threat.

Thursday: The center of Dorian is expected to pass near the South Carolina coast. A landfall of the center in South Carolina can’t be ruled out, which would bring the most damaging winds and storm-surge flooding. However, these impacts will also occur even if Dorian’s center does not make a landfall. Heavy rain will also lead to flooding in this area. Coastal flooding, wind and rain flooding will worsen in eastern North Carolina, especially in southeast North Carolina, but will also spread to the Virginia Tidewater and the southern Delmarva Peninsula Thursday night.

Friday: Dorian’s center will track near, if not make a landfall over, eastern North Carolina bringing storm surge flooding, potentially damaging winds and flooding rain as far north as southeast Virginia. By Friday night, the center of Dorian will move into the Atlantic Ocean, with improving conditions in North Carolina and southeast Virginia.

Saturday: Dorian may track close enough to bring a period of rain and some wind to southeast New England before it quickly races toward parts of Nova Scotia and Newfoundland later in the weekend.

(MORE: Potential Northeast Impacts From Dorian)

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Projected Path

(The red-shaded area denotes the potential path of the center of Dorian. It’s important to note that impacts – heavy rain, high surf, coastal flooding and winds – with any tropical cyclone usually spread beyond its forecast path.)

Dorian’s Storm Surge, Wind and Rain Impacts

Dorian will be a dangerous hurricane with significant impacts along the Southeast coast, with a track similar to Matthew in 2016, a $10 billion hurricane disaster.

(MORE: Why Dorian Will Likely Be a Retired Hurricane Name)

Storm Surge

Larger swells and battering waves generated by Dorian will spread northward and increase along the Southeast coast from eastern Florida to North Carolina and will persist for several days.

This will lead to increasing beach erosion and coastal flooding, particularly around times of high tides, which are generally an hour or so before or after midday and midnight.

These impacts will occur regardless of how close Dorian’s center tracks or whether it ever moves ashore in any part of Georgia or the Carolinas.

(MAS: Dorian en Español)

The National Hurricane Center says water could reach the following heights above ground level if the peak surge coincides with high tide.

-Isle of Palms to Myrtle Beach, South Carolina: 5 to 8 feet

-Savannah River (at the border between Georgia and South Carolina) to Isle of Palms, South Carolina: 4 to 7 feet

-Myrtle Beach, South Carolina, to Cape Lookout, North Carolina: 4 to 7 feet

-Cape Lookout, North Carolina, to Duck, North Carolina, including Pamlico and Albemarle sounds and the Neuse and Pamlico rivers: 4 to 6 feet

-Volusia/Brevard County line in Florida to the Savannah River: 3 to 5 feet

-Sebastian Inlet, Florida, to the Volusia/Brevard County line in Florida: 2 to 4 feet

-Duck, North Carolina, to Poquoson, Virginia, including Hampton Roads: 2 to 4 feet

This storm-surge forecast may change slightly depending on how close Dorian tracks to the Southeast coast.

(MAP: Potential Storm-Surge Inundation)

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Storm-Surge Forecast

(From the National Hurricane Center.)

The high-tide times corresponding to peak storm surge from Dorian are:

-Mayport, Florida: 1:40 p.m. Wednesday

-Fort Pulaski, Georgia: 1:10 p.m. Wednesday and 1:24 a.m. Thursday

-Charleston, South Carolina: 1:11 a.m. Thursday

-Myrtle Beach, South Carolina: 12:45 a.m. and 1:30 p.m. Thursday

-Wrightsville Beach, North Carolina: 1:10 p.m. Thursday

-Oregon Inlet, North Carolina: 2:59 p.m. Friday and 3:39 a.m. Saturday (sound side flood threat)

-Norfolk (Sewell’s Point), Virginia: 4:04 p.m. Friday

The storm tide at Ft. Pulaski, Georgia, Wednesday is expected to reach a level exceeded only by Hurricanes Matthew and Irma, inundating highway 80 between Savannah and Tybee Island, some low-lying sections of Savannah, and other areas along the Georgia coast.

Charleston, South Carolina, will experience impactful flooding from two high tides, early Wednesday afternoon, and a peak around 1 a.m. Thursday. This overnight storm tide may exceed the peak reached during Hurricane Irma (9.92 feet) by several inches, but will remain over 2 feet below the record storm tide from Hurricane Hugo 30 years ago.

Winds

The worst wind impacts will occur within the hurricane’s eyewall, assuming any part of it affects land, which is still uncertain.

Tropical-storm-force winds (39-plus mph) will arrive along the coast well ahead of Dorian’s closest pass, making preparations difficult.

Use the times listed below as the time you need have preparations completed.

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Chance and Likely Timing of Tropical-Storm-Force Winds

(Tropical-storm-force winds are winds of at least 39 mph.)

These winds will be capable of taking down trees and power lines across the Southeast coast, leading to power outages that could last for several days. Ground soaked by rain will only increase this threat, allowing trees to topple in winds less strong than typically expected.

Power outages are most likely along the immediate coastline from Florida to North Carolina, where winds will be stronger than areas farther inland. However, outages are still possible from eastern Florida to southeastern Virginia inland from the coast.

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Power Outage Forecast

Rainfall Flood Threat

Here are the latest rainfall projections from the National Hurricane Center and NOAA’s Weather Prediction Center:

-Coastal South Carolina and North Carolina: 5 to 10 inches, locally up to 15 inches.

-Near the Atlantic coast from northeast Florida through Georgia: 3 to 6 inches, locally up to 9 inches

-Southeast Virginia: 3 to 6 inches

Water piling onshore from storm surge won’t allow rain-swollen rivers and streams to drain normally for some time before, during and shortly after the closest pass of Dorian’s center. This will backup these rivers and streams upstream.

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Rainfall Outlook

(This should be interpreted as a broad outlook of where the heaviest rain may fall. Higher amounts may occur where bands or clusters of thunderstorms stall for over a period of a few hours.)

Check back to weather.com for the latest on Hurricane Dorian.

Dorian’s Historic Landfalls in the Northwest Bahamas

Dorian was upgraded to Category 5 status Sunday morning.

Dorian became the first hurricane of that intensity to make landfall on Grand Bahama Island, after first making a pair of landfalls in the Abacos Islands of the northwestern Bahamas earlier in the day.

Maximum sustained winds topped out at 185 mph on Sunday, putting Dorian in a tie for the second-highest sustained wind speed among all Atlantic hurricanes. It also tied the 1935 Labor Day Hurricane in the Florida Keys as the strongest landfalling hurricane in the Atlantic Basin.

(MORE: The Rarity of Category 5 Hurricanes)

According to Robert Rohde, lead scientist at Berkeley Earth, while over the northwestern Bahamas, Dorian was also the slowest-moving major hurricane (Category 3 or stronger) on record in the Atlantic Basin, crawling at just 1 to 2 mph averaged over a 24-hour period.

Dorian’s eyewall finally moved away from Grand Bahama Island on Tuesday afternoon after pummeling the island for 41 straight hours since Sunday night with destructive winds and catastrophic storm-surge flooding. Settlement Point, Grand Bahama, reported a sustained wind of 61 mph with a gust to 82 mph Monday evening.

This intense hurricane lashed the northwestern Bahamas for more than 48 hours since first beginning its siege on the Abacos Islands Sunday morning.

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Hurricane Dorian Track History

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