Published: Mon, September 02, 2019
Research | By Sheri Schwartz

Hurricane Dorian prompts evacuations in Bahamas

Hurricane Dorian prompts evacuations in Bahamas

- Hurricane Dorian is now officially the strongest hurricane in modern records to hit the northwestern Bahamas, as it moves west through the Atlantic as a catastrophic Category 5 storm.

Hurricane Dorian made landfall moments ago on the Abaco Islands in the Bahamas.

Videos have emerged of the damage wrought by Hurricane Dorian's 185-mph winds as it passes over the northwest Bahamas on September 1.

"This has been a slow-moving storm", Peter Gaynor, acting Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) administrator, told CNN, adding the hurricane was expected to stall off of West Palm Beach, Florida, on Monday and linger along the us coast until Friday.

On Tuesday and Wednesday, Dorian is forecast to be 60 to 80km off the Florida with hurricane-force wind speeds extending about 55km to the west.

Meterologist Ryan Maue says that the current forecast track for the Bahamas "is a disaster: feet of Rain, storm surge, and Cat 4 sustained winds".

Tropical-storm force winds, or winds 39 miles per hour or greater, could hit SC at about 8 p.m. Tuesday and North Carolina at about 8 a.m. Wednesday, forecasters say.

In 2016, Hurricane Matthew veered away from Florida without a landfall but still left massive destruction in Florida, South Carolina and North Carolina from torrential rains.

In South Carolina, Governor Henry McMaster declared a state of emergency on Saturday. Construction codes require homes to have metal reinforcements for roof beams to withstand winds into the upper limits of a Category 4 hurricane, and compliance is generally tight for residents who can afford it. Risks are higher in poorer communities, which typically have wooden homes and are generally in lower-lying areas.

The hope of dodging Dorian's fury came Friday, even as the storm ratcheted up from a menacing Category 3 hurricane to an even more unsafe Category 4.

A hurricane watch was issued for the east of Florida from north of Deerfield Beach to the Volusia/Brevard County line.

Forecasters said they expected Dorian to shift eastwards around the middle of the week, putting the coasts of Georgia and SC at risk.

Hurricanes of this power would be expected to cause widespread, catastrophic damage.

But as it starts moving again, Dorian could have a larger impact on the Carolinas and less of one on Florida, the News & Observer reported Sunday.

"Given the strength and unpredictability of the storm, we must prepare for every possible scenario", he said.

Orlando International Airport officials said late Saturday that the airport will remain open Monday because of the turn northward in Hurricane Dorian's projected path.

The "extremely dangerous" storm is expected to slam the north-west of the island chain on Sunday, the US National Hurricane Center (NHC) said, before making landfall on the US east coast.

Dorian's eyewall will hit the northwestern Bahamas with devastating winds, life-threatening storm surge and heavy rainfall, the NHC said. "They said evacuate, you have to evacuate".

"That could produce life-threatening storm surge and hurricane force winds", DeSantis said.

"Walt Disney World Resort is operating under normal conditions", the park said.

"We expect that much of the eastern seaboard would be ultimately impacted and some of it very, very severely", Trump said.

"This is the strongest hurricane that's ever hit in the Bahamas", Creenan said.

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