Published On: Mon, Sep 2nd, 2019

Hurricane Dorian: Florida braced for joint-strongest Cat5 EVER – 1.5m told to evacuate | World | News


Hurricane #Dorian is one of the strongest storms that’s ever threatened Florida

Governor Ron DeSantis

Meanwhile the US state’s Governor Ron DeSantis has urged people living in at-risk coastal areas to evacuate, describing as “one of the strongest storms that’s ever threatened ”. The hurricane has already claimed the life of a seven-year-old boy in the Bahamas, with the youngster’s sister missing – and Mr DeSantis warned it posed a clear and present danger dangers to Floridians. Dorian is the joint-strongest Atlantic hurricane to ever make landfall in the .

Mr DeSantis tweeted: “Hurricane #Dorian is one of the strongest storms that’s ever threatened Florida.

“If you live in a county with evacuation orders, please heed the call.”

Hurricane Dorian lashed the northern as a catastrophic Category 5 storm with record 185mph winds ripping off roofs, overturning cars and tearing down power lines.

The storm’s top sustained winds decreased slightly to 180mph while it spun along Grand Bahama island overnight, in what forecasters said would be a day-long assault.

Hurricane Dorian

Hurricane Dorian is heading towards Florida (Image: National Hurricane Center)

Florida sandbags

Florida residents fill sandbags to prepare for the arrival of Dorian (Image: Reuters)

Earlier, Dorian battered with fearsome winds and surf.

There was little information from the affected islands, but officials expected large numbers of residents to be left homeless.

Most people went to shelters as the storm approached, with tourist hotels shutting down and residents boarding up their homes.

Tragically, Lachino Mcintosh, 7, drowned while his family was trying to evacuate their home on Abaco island, while his sister is missing, according to a tweet by the Bahamas Press.

JUST IN:

Hubert Minnis Lachino Mcintosh

Bahamas Prime Minister Hubert Minnis issued a warning after the tragic death of Lachino Mcintosh (Image: GETTY)

On Sunday, Dorian’s maximum sustained winds reached 185mph, with gusts of up to 220mph, tying the record for the most powerful Atlantic hurricane ever to come ashore, equalling the Labor Day hurricane of 1935, which happened before the convention in which storms were named.

As of early Monday, the holiday in the US, the hurricane’s westward movement had slowed somewhat to 5mph.

Forecasters predict Dorian will begin pulling away from the Bahamas early on Tuesday, curving to the north-east parallel to the US Southeast seaboard.

It is likely to stay close to the shore, bringing dangerously high winds and heavy surf, and could still make landfall.

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Dorian Florida

Another image showing Dorian heading for Florida (Image: National Hurricane Center)

Dorian ISS

A picture of Dorian from the International Space Station (Image: ISS)

South Carolina Governor Henry McMaster has ordered a mandatory evacuation of the entire coast of the state amid .

The order, which covers about 830,000 people, goes into effect at noon local time on Monday, when state troopers will begin reversing lanes so they all head inland on major coastal highways.

Hundreds of thousands more have been told to evacuate across other parts of south-east US. 

Mr McMaster said: “We can’t make everybody happy. But we believe we can keep everyone alive.”

Georgia’s governor Brian Kemp has also ordered a mandatory evacuation of the state’s Atlantic coast, also starting at noon on Monday.

Cost of destruction

A graphic highlighting the enormous cost of hurricanes and tropical storms (Image: GETTY)

In the more populous state of Florida, authorities have ordered mandatory evacuations in some vulnerable coastal areas.

More than 600 Labor Day flights in the US had been cancelled as of Sunday afternoon, many of them in Florida as bore down on the state.

The only recorded storm that was more powerful was Hurricane Allen in 1980, with 190mph winds, although it did not make landfall at that strength.

“Catastrophic conditions” were reported in Abaco, with a storm surge of 18-23 feet (5.5-7 metres), and Dorian was expected to cross Grand Bahama later in the day “with all its fury”.

Governor Ron DeSantis

Governor Ron DeSantis has said the storm represents a threat to life (Image: Twitter)

In the northern stretches of the archipelago, hotels closed, residents boarded up homes and officials hired boats to move people to bigger islands.

Video that Joy Jibrilu, director general of the Bahamas’ Ministry of Tourism and Aviation, and government spokesman Kevin Harris said was sent by Abaco residents showed homes missing parts of their roofs, downed power lines and smashed and overturned cars. One showed floodwaters rushing through the streets of an unidentified town at nearly the height of a car roof.

Prime Minister said in some parts of Abaco, “you cannot tell the difference as to the beginning of the street versus where the ocean begins.”

The government opened 14 shelters across the Bahamas. Dozens ignored evacuation orders, officials said.

The issued a hurricane watch for Florida’s East Coast from Deerfield Beach north to the Volusia and Brevard county line.

Mr DeSantis told reporters: “We’re not out of the woods yet”, wanting Dorian brought with it the potential for “life-threatening storm surge and hurricane force winds.”

He added: “Please prepare, because this thing is a big boy.”

Mandatory evacuation orders for low-lying and flood-prone areas and mobile homes were in effect starting either Sunday or Monday from Palm Beach County north to at least the Daytona Beach area, and some counties to the north issued voluntary evacuation notices.

Florida

Concerns over Dorian have triggered large queues in supermarkets in Florida (Image: Reuters)

On Tuesday and Wednesday, Dorian is forecast to be 40 to 50 miles off Florida with hurricane-force wind speeds extending about 35 miles to the west.

National Hurricane Centre director Ken Graham urged residents not to bet on safety just because the specific forecast track has the storm just a bit offshore.

He said the situation was being complicated by the fact that with every new forecast, “we keep nudging Dorian’s track a little bit to the left” and closer to the coast, he added.



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