Things are certainly getting “interesting” with the models. For the past several days, I’ve mentioned two tracks 1) Dorian moves into Florida, then skirts the Southeast / Mid-Atlantic Coast and then moves out to sea, 2) Dorian moves across Florida and into the Gulf of Mexico and makes another landfall along the Alabama coast or Florida Panhandle.
The *consistent* European model still has its eyes on Florida Sunday into Monday, however, it’s what happens “down the road” that could get interesting, even locally in the Mid-Atlantic.
For now, our “Dorian Threat” map has a 70% (HIGH) chance of impacts from West Palm Beach to Daytona Beach, Florida. While there likely will be SOME changes to the forecast in these areas (where exactly Dorian makes landfall) these areas are at the highest risk for seeing the strongest winds, heavy rain, and flooding. This may need to be adjusted a bit further north or south, as new data comes in.
The “High” (red) area means to PREPARE, get enough essential items (non-perishable foods, water, etc.) that will last you for several days. Think about what outside items may need to come inside so they don’t go airborne. Most importantly, WHEN OR IF you are told to evacuate, please do so. There’s ZERO reason for you to stay. If you are elderly or disabled, please call your local county or city office to arrange a ride to a shelter. Most locations have services that will help you get to a safer place.
If you decide to stay, please realize that emergency management may not be able to get to you during hurricane conditions. You are not only putting your life at risk, but other lives as well.
As of 5:00 a.m. Thursday, Dorian has maximum sustained winds of 85 MPH, moving Northeast at 13 MPH. The National Hurricane Center is now forecasting high-end Category 3 hurricane strength (125 MPH) along the coast of Florida late Sunday into Monday morning.
Here is the new European model early Thursday morning. Orange and red colors are high pressure, and blue represents lower heights of pressure.
All the models agree up to this point. Sunday evening, Dorian is forced to move to the west as a ridge of high pressure builds across the north. However, it does not appear to be as strong compared to previous runs.
Late Monday into Tuesday, Dorian is over the Florida Peninsula. The *biggest* change in this model run is that Dorian NEVER goes into the Gulf of Mexico. A trough (in blue to the north) is going to try and pick up Dorian to the north. The ridging across the Southeast has backed off considerably. This allows Dorian to move towards the north.
As we advance into NEXT WEDNESDAY AND THURSDAY, Bermuda high or Southeast Ridge rebuilds and there appears to be more ridging to the west. This is a situation that I never like to see, because with so much ridging, this could allow Dorian to move VERY SLOW, which would cause a lot of heavy rain and flash flooding.
NEXT FRIDAY AND SATURDAY, Dorian is still hanging around, but there is now a nice open shot for the storm to move off the Mid-Atlantic coast. This solution would still bring quite a bit of rain for the Carolina’s and Mid-Atlantic before moving out to sea.
The GFS (American model) remains further to the north and makes landfall late Monday near Jacksonville, Florida.
The Canadian model is in agreement with the European model and would bring heavy rain to the Mid-Atlantic by the END OF NEXT WEEK.
The latest ensembles from the European make a pretty significant shift to the east. Most ensembles were over the Gulf, now they are hugging Florida, the Southeast and Mid-Atlantic coast.
The Gulf of Mexico is NOT out of the woods by any stretch YET.
The WIND GUST “SWATH” (the track of Dorian) on the European model is pretty impressive. It’s forecasting wind gusts 100 to 120 mph (or higher) across portions of South Florida and South Central Florida. On this run, the greatest impacts would be from Fort Lauderdale (just north of Miami) to Port Saint Lucie area.
As we head into late next week, look at the Tropical Storm wind gusts along the Southeast and Mid-Atlantic coastline, even breezy conditions into the Chesapeake Bay.
The GFS model has a much different solution, making landfall near Jacksonville with Category 1 or 2 Hurricane force winds and gusts. However, the strong wind field stops in Georgia, because the system moves further inland and becomes a heavy rainmaker.
Flash Flooding could be a HUGE CONCERN from Florida to the Mid-Atlantic, IF this model solution (and trends) continue. I strongly empathize the word “IF” because states along the Gulf of Mexico, especially Mississippi and Alabama to the Florida Panhandle, are NOT out of the woods just yet.
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