Tropical Storm Dorian is now a Hurricane Dorian as it continues edging north toward Florida’s east coast, bringing a promise of high winds to Georgia and the Carolinas as early as 8 a.m. Saturday, according to the National Hurricane Center.
Cone maps released early Tuesday show the storm’s center making landfall this weekend near Jupiter, Florida, 115 miles north of Miami, bringing heavy rain and winds with it.
Dorian is expected to begin a northwest turn Wednesday, forecasters said. However, experts have not yet decided if the storm will roll up the East Coast toward the Carolinas or pass over Florida.
A track up the coast would mean heavy rain, high winds and storm surge for Georgia and the Carolinas. On Tuesday morning, forecasters began warning southeastern Georgia and South Carolina were within the wind impact area.
Current predictions call for windsin the 10 to 40 mph range to begin hitting the Florida coast around 8 p.m. Friday, the National Hurricane Center says. Dorian currently has sustained winds of 50 mph, forecasters said Tuesday.
Rain of 2 to 10 inches accompanied the storm as it passed over islands in the Caribbean.
“While uncertainty remains high, wind and rain impacts are possible in the Bahamas and Florida later this week and this weekend,” National Hurricane Center forecasters said early Tuesday.
“Residents in these areas should monitor the progress of Dorian and ensure they have their hurricane plan in place,” according to the forecast.
It’s believed “environmental conditions become more favorable for intensification” of the storm as it moves north of the Greater Antilles, the National Hurricane Center said Tuesday.
“The future intensity of Dorian will be quite dependent on how much land interaction there is with the mountainous island of Hispaniola. The NHC intensity forecast lies near the upper end of the guidance in the short term, while the system is over the Caribbean Sea, but near the middle of the guidance envelope after that,” forecasters said.
A second storm, called Tropical Depression Six, is located a few hundred miles southeast of Cape Hatteras, North Carolina, the National Hurricane Center says.
It is expected to stay offshore as it moves north, making landfall Friday in Nova Scotia, forecasters say.
The Weather Channel says the tropical depression could create ocean swells off the Carolinas ”that could lead to rip currents and high surf along parts of the Eastern Seaboard early this week.”