PortandTerminal.com, August 31, 2019
MIAMI, FL – Hurricane Dorian has intensified and become an “extremely dangerous” category 4 storm, as it bore down on the north-western Bahamas early on Saturday en route to the US east coast.
Category 4 hurricanes are the most deadly to ever have hit the United States. The deadliest of them all was Galveston Category 4 Hurricane that struck on September 1900 and killed between 8,000 – 12,000 people. For perspective, that’s double the number of victims killed at Pearl Harbor and the 911 Trade Tower attacks COMBINED.
The National Hurricane Center (NHC) in Miami has said that its meteorologists were uncertain whether Dorian would make a devastating direct strike or inflict a glancing blow on Florida. Some of the more reliable computer models predicted a late turn northward that would have Dorian hug the Florida coast.
The risk may be increasing elsewhere. The NHC advisory released at 8 am on Saturday EDT warned of the possibility of “strong winds and life-threatening storm surge” is increasing along Georgia and South Carolina’s coasts.
Millions in Florida, Walt Disney World and Donald Trump’s Mar-a-Lago resort could be in the crosshairs. Forecasters said Dorian, which had top sustained winds of 140mph on Friday night, will threaten the Florida peninsula late on Labor Day Monday or early on Tuesday.
National Hurricane Center projections showed Dorian hitting roughly near Fort Pierce, some 70 miles north of Mar-a-Lago, then running along the coastline as it moved north. But forecasters cautioned that the storm’s track remains still highly uncertain and even a small deviation could put Dorian offshore – or well inland.
Trump has declared a state of emergency in Florida and authorized the Federal Emergency Management Agency (Fema) to coordinate disaster-relief efforts. He told reporters “Mar-a-Lago can handle itself” and that he is more worried about Florida.
Some counties announced mandatory evacuations ahead of time. Brevard county and Martin county officials said residents of barrier islands, mobile homes and low-lying areas would be under a mandatory evacuation order beginning on Sunday morning.
The Brevard county order includes the Kennedy Space Center. Indian River county officials said they will recommend residents of its barrier island voluntarily evacuate once hurricane warnings are issued.
Homeowners and businesses rushed to cover their windows with plywood. Supermarkets ran out of bottled water, and long lines formed at gas stations, with some fuel shortages reported.
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