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Category 5 Hurricane Dorian slamming northwestern Bahamas | Breton Blog

Florida's Atlantic coast set for impacts starting Monday

PORTLAND, Maine — There's no other way to describe it, what's happening to the Abaco Islands and Grand Bahama today is awful.

Florida's Atlantic coast isn't out of the woods either.

The National Hurricane Center upgraded Dorian's winds to category five status at 8 a.m. Sunday. By 9:30 a.m., they issued a special statement warning hurricane hunter aircraft found winds to 175 mph inside the eyewall. 

We discussed Saturday how the trend in guidance was a bit east, off the coast of Florida. That trend has stalled. A landfall in Florida is not likely, but it can't be ruled out either.

The storm will start to take a turn to the north later Monday, but when that happens is critical.

At the minimum, tropical storm force winds are likely on the coast from the West Palm Beach area northward to the Space Coast. Power outages, major coastal erosion and heavy rain will occur.

If Dorian shifts west of the current forecast by just 50 or 75 miles, hurricane force winds will come onshore. Truly too close for comfort.

However, the west coast of Florida looks in much better shape, only impacted by outer rain bands and less persistent wind gusts.

It's a slow mover. It will take until Wednesday for the storm to reach north Florida, then Thursday it will reach the Carolinas.

There's quite a bit of uncertainty there. The bulk could stay offshore, but a more direct hit is still possible too. Coastal Carolina residents should be preparing nonetheless.

I'm already getting a lot of questions about what could happen here in Maine. Right now, almost all indications are high pressure will be building into New England, suppressing whatever it is left of Dorian to our south, next Friday into Saturday.

Credit: NCM

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At the minimum, seas will build and our beaches will see high surf and rip currents next weekend.

Weather-wise, there's nothing we need to be concerned about at this point, but if that changes we will let you know.

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