Dorian gains strength as it approaches the Carolinas


Hurricane Dorian has regained strength and reformed a more cohesive eye as the storm moves north along the Southeast Coast of the United States.

The National Hurricane Center said the storm “continues to exhibit a large eye of about 50 nautical miles in diameter on satellite and radar images.” There has been little change to the minimum central pressure and flight-level winds are still close to 100 knots as of 5 a.m. today. Officials expect Dorian to experience increasing southwesterly shear that could lead to slow weakening over the next few days.

“Life-threatening storm surge and dangerous winds are expected along portions of the coasts of South Carolina and North Carolina, and portions of southeast Virginia and southern Chesapeake Bay, regardless of the track of Dorian’s center,” the NHC said in this morning’s discussion. The center said that water levels will rise in advance of the winds’ arrival and that flash flooding will become “increasingly likely across the eastern Carolinas today.”

At 8:45 a.m., the Weather Channel reported that Charleston was flooding from storm surge and rain and that Dorian had spawned some tornadoes. Additionally, more than 200,000 people have reportedly lost power, primarily in South Carolina with additional outages in Georgia and North Carolina.

The official forecast has the storm maintaining hurricane strength through the next 72 hours. After three days, global models show Dorian becoming “embedded within a baroclinic zone,” and simulated satellite imagery shows a cloud pattern that leads the NHC to forecast the storm becoming “extratropical” during that time.

Currently, the storm has maximum winds of about 115 mph and within 24 hours, those are expected to weaken to 105 mph. The forecast has the winds continuing to drop to 90 mph in 48 hours and 75 mph in 72 hours.


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