Dorian Returns to Category 3 Major Hurricane Status

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NOAA/NESDIS/STAR GOES ABI BAND 07 OR_ABI-L1b-RadC-M6C07_G16_s20192480921093_e20192480923478_c20192480923576.nc

Dorian is back to a major hurricane.

Eye moves over Hatteras, NC at 10AM tomorrow.

Cat-3 major hurricane ALL DAY moving along Carolina Coast.

Could stay cat-3 major hurricane moving to the southeast of New England early Saturday.

Fig. 1: Satellite view of the North Atlantic basin including impressive Category 3 Major Hurricane Dorian.

Fig. 2: Satellite view of the western North Atlantic basin and powerful Category 3 Major Hurricane Dorian.

Current position/intensity: At 6AM EDT Category 3 Major Hurricane Dorian was located at 31.8N/79.4W or about 85 miles south-southeast of Charleston, SC. Dorian is moving north at 7 mph. Maximum wind speed is 115 mph. Central pressure is 957 MB. The overnight trend is stronger as Dorian is moving over very warm water and increasing upper shear atop Dorian is encouraging stronger inflow at surface level into a well-organized eye.

Climate Impact Company statement: Dorian’s eye has widened to 50 miles this morning. Dorian has crossed very warm water south of South Carolina the past 12+ hours leading to re-strengthening of the storm back to major hurricane status. Dorian has not fully encountered southwest shear to cause a northeast turn which is expected later today.

The forecast keeps Dorian just offshore South Carolina today but may take the storm inland the southeast coast of North Carolina around dawn tomorrow. The closer proximity to land coupled with southwesterly upper shear should cause some weakening of Dorian but not much as models indicate surface pressure near 957 MB now rises only slightly to 963-965 MB for the encounter with North Carolina. The eye of Dorian moves across Hatteras, NC tomorrow morning around 10AM.

Dorian is off the North Carolina coast early tomorrow afternoon. Dorian remains an angry storm and could temporarily regain category 3 major hurricane status south and southeast of New England Friday night and Saturday morning.

South Carolina and especially North Carolina will be hit hard by this storm with a large storm surge, extreme rainfall and hurricane force wind that lasts 12+ hours. Southeast Virginia and southeast Maryland are also hit hard with fill tropical storm conditions. Cape Cod and the Islands of Massachusetts also encounter tropical storm conditions.

Fig. 3: Depiction of Dorian location and intensity at midnight tonight.

Fig. 4: Depiction of Dorian over Hatteras, NC at 10AM EDT Friday.

Fig. 5: Depiction of Dorian at 8AM EDT southeast of Cape Cod, Mass.

Storm surge: The NOAA/NHC storm surge forecast…

  • 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
  • Duck NC to Poquoson VA, including Hampton Roads…2 to 4 ft

Warnings: A STORM SURGE WARNING is in effect for Savannah River to Poquoson, VA including Pamlico and Albemarle Sounds, Neuse and Pamlico Rivers plus Hampton Roads. A HURRICANE WARNING is in effect for Savannah River to the NC/VA state line.

Fig. 6: The NHC 5-day forecast track for Category 3 Major Hurricane Dorian.

Fig. 7: The NOAA/NHC Dorian rainfall forecast.