Dorian expected to hit Abaco as early as Sunday morning

Dorian expected to hit Abaco as early as Sunday morning

Dorian strengthens to Category 4 storm with 130 mile-per-hour winds

NASSAU, BAHAMAS — Acting Director of Meteorology Jeffrey Simmons said today that as early as Sunday morning, Marsh Harbour, Abaco will begin to feel tropical storm-force winds from Hurricane Dorian.

As Dorian slowly makes its way to The Bahamas, moving at 10 miles per hour, “it is projected to reach Category 4 with winds in excess of 140 miles per hour and slow to a speed of almost 6 miles per hour”, according to NEMA Director Captain Stephen Russell, who addressed the media at a press conference at police headquarters.

NEMA has activated its National Emergency Operations Centre.

Noting that Dorian is a dangerous and power storm that could produce “catastrophic results”, Russell urged residents in the affected islands to quickly complete their final hurricane preparations.

“All residents on the islands of Abaco and Grand Bahama are to rush to completion their hurricane preparedness plan,” he said.

“Plans are in motion to evacuate persons from the various vulnerable areas such as the cays in North Abaco and areas of West and East End Grand Bahama, which are at risk of storm surge and severe flooding.

“This storm is expected to provide storm surge in excess of 15 feet.”

As of 9 p.m. Friday, the storm was 329 miles east of Governor’s Harbour, Eleuthera.

Simmons said by 4 a.m. Sunday morning, Marsh Harbour, Central Abaco will begin to feel tropical storm-force winds.

He said by 11 a.m. that morning, East End Grand Bahama will begin to feel tropical storm-force winds winds.

“At this time, Marsh Harbour, Abaco is expected to experience strong tropical storm-force winds,” Simmons said.

“Around 2 p.m. on Sunday evening, we expect hurricane force winds. At that time Hurricane Dorian is expected to be a Category 4 hurricane with sustained winds of about 130 mph.

“It is anticipated that the center of Dorian will move on shore to Marsh Harbour at about 5 p.m. on Sunday afternoon and continue moving toward the west.

“At about 11 p.m. Sunday night it is anticipated center of Dorian will move onto East End Grand Bahama and continue moving westward along Grand Bahama throughout Sunday night into Monday morning.”

“The center of Dorian will move to Bimini Monday morning,” Simmons added

Hurricane Dorian is expected to clear The Bahamas by Monday afternoon.

Despite the projections, Dorian had strengthened to Category 4 tonight with sustained winds of around 130 miles per hour. It is expected to continue to strengthen.

This article was written by Eyewitness News Intern Scharlee Thompson