Hurricane Hunter plane captures stunning images inside eye of Category 5 Dorian

Pablo Tucker
September 2, 2019

The storm still threatens Florida, Georgia, and North and SC with powerful winds and potentially deadly flooding.

"The coordination is there and it's something that makes you proud, the way the state of Florida handled this", Yoho said.

As of 8 a.m. EDT (1200 GMT), Dorian has maximum wind speeds of 160 mph (260 km/h) as the storm churns about 35 miles (55 km) east of Great Abaco Island, the NHC wrote in the update.

The storm's eye is now forecast to remain offshore as the storm moves up the U.S. East Coast from Florida to Georgia, and then on to the Carolinas.

The storm was projected to reach Florida by Labor Day weekend, but current forecasts have it turning north Monday evening.

Mandatory evacuations have been ordered for several counties and many schools are closed ahead of the storm's arrival this week.

Hurricane and tropical storm watches and warnings stretched along nearly the entire east coast of Florida. United States experts have predicted that Dorian will be some 40 to 50 miles off Florida's coast on Tuesday and Wednesday, with hurricane force winds reaching some 35 miles toward the shore.

With its maximum sustained winds of 185 miles per hour and gusts up to 220 miles per hour, Dorian tied the record for the most powerful Atlantic hurricane ever to come ashore, equaling the Labor Day hurricane of 1935, before the storms were named.

The Georgia Department of Transportation will begin contraflow of traffic on I-16 from 8 expedite the evacuations, the order said.

The only recorded storm that was more powerful was Hurricane Allen in 1980, with its 305kmh winds.

The hurricane season typically peaks between mid-August and late October. "The big question is, where do we go from here?"

"And I've seen some Category fours, you don't even see them that much, but a Category five is something that I don't know that I've ever even heard the term other than I know it's there", the president added. "That's the ultimate, and that's what we have, unfortunately".

Barack Obama only experienced one Category 5 hurricane in eight years as President. Dorian's forecast track has shifted east since Friday, making a landfall in Florida less likely but not out of the question. But I think the message for today is, with the new Cat 5, don't take your eye off this storm. "Now is the time to prepare for Dorian".

In the Daytona Beach area, relief that had set in among residents as they watched forecasts pushing the storm east gave way to pause as Dorian intensified to Category 5.

Last October, Hurricane Michael, which was originally designated as a Category 4, barreled into the Florida Panhandle as the third Category 5 hurricane to blast the U.S. since Trump.

"It's just up to the residents to be prepared and again heed the warning".

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