Dorian gets stronger, expected to be major hurricane soon; chance it could cross into Gulf after striking Florida

Published 11:29 am Wednesday, August 28, 2019

A weaker high pressure over Berumuda over the weekend or a slower moving low pressure system through opens up locations from the Florida Keys to the Outer Banks for potential impacts.

This could influence whether Dorian tracks westward into Florida or slows before reaching the Florida coast and makes a turn to the north.

“If Dorian does slow and turn to the north, impacts in the Carolinas would be much more significant while Florida would be spared from major damage,” Douty added.

Subscribe to our free email newsletter

Get the latest news sent to your inbox

“Because of the wide range of possibilities, the wind, surge and rainfall impacts expected from Dorian over the northern Bahamas and Florida are highly uncertain at this point,” added Kottlowski.

By the time Dorian reaches the United States, the overall size of the storm may be somewhat larger and its impact farther-reaching, when compared to the compact system in the Caribbean. This could bring a wider range of impacts from southern Florida to the Georgia and South Carolina coastline.

As Dorian approaches, conditions will deteriorate first along the southeastern U.S. Atlantic coastlines, with increasingly rough surf and rip currents.

Rainfall will also increase over the Florida Peninsula during the holiday weekend, ahead of landfall sometime late Sunday or early on Monday, depending on how far north the tropical cyclone wanders beforehand.

Locations near landfall should prepare for Dorian to be a 3 on the AccuWeather RealImpact™ Scale For Hurricanes.

Heavy, tropical downpours and damaging winds delivered by Dorian will be capable of causing tree and structural damage, as well as power outages.

Once making landfall, should Dorian remain over land, the system may slowly weaken and rain itself out over the southeastern corner of the U.S. through early next week.

However, if Dorian is influenced by other weather systems moving through the eastern U.S., it could be drawn northward along the Eastern Seaboard next week, affecting locations from the coast to the Appalachians.

Dorian could also turn more to the west and reach the Gulf of Mexico, providing another period of strengthening and a wider range of impacts next week. In this case, the overall impacts of the storm on U.S. interests surrounding the Gulf of Mexico will be re-evaluated.