10:15 AM Update: Special Statement by the National Hurricane Center: Dorian pounding the northern Bahamas now with 175mph (280km/h) winds. Dorian is now in elite company, only six Atlantic storms have had stronger winds, Allen (1980), Gilbert (1988), Mitch (1998), Rita (2005), Wilma (2005) and Irma (2017).
Previous Post: Extremely dangerous hurricane Dorian is within hours of making landfall on Great Abaco Island in The Bahamas. The storm will batter the northwest Bahamas all day Sunday an into Monday.
Early Sunday morning, hurricane Dorian was upgraded to a powerful category 5 storm, with winds of 260km/h (160 mph). The storm is battering the northwest Bahamas, and expected to do so through Monday. The slow moving hurricane is drifting west at 15km/h. Dorian was located 55km east of Great Abaco Island. Catastrophic damage from wind, rain and storm surge is possible with a category 5 storm.
Hurricane warnings remain in effect for the northwest Bahamas, while a tropical storm warning is in effect for the Florida coast from Deerfield to Sebastian Inlet. A tropical storm watch has been posted north of Deerfield to Golden Beach. Winds and waves will begin increasing along the Florida coast late tonight and on Labour Day. The worst of the storm however may spare Florida and remain offshore.
Some computer models now have Dorian remaining off the Florida coast and turning sharply north then northeast early this week. The hurricane now poses a serious threat to the North and South Carolina coast, including the extremely fragile Outer Banks (my home away from home). A state of emergency remains in effect for Florida, Georgia and the Carolinas. Watches or warnings will likely be extended northward later today or Monday.