Hurricane Matthew Close To Category 4
Hurricane Matthew Close To Category 4
Overnight Hurricane Matthew began a strengthening trend that has taken the central pressure down by some 18 millibars. Winds have increased to 125 mph and Hurricane Matthew is close to returning to category 4 status. Weather conditions will deteriorate over South Coastal Florida later today.
...RECONNAISSANCE AIRCRAFT FINDS MATTHEW STRENGTHENING NEAR THE NORTHWESTERN BAHAMAS... SUMMARY OF 500 AM EDT...0900 UTC...INFORMATION ---------------------------------------------- LOCATION...24.2N 77.1W ABOUT 60 MI...95 KM SSE OF NASSAU ABOUT 255 MI...410 KM SE OF WEST PALM BEACH FLORIDA MAXIMUM SUSTAINED WINDS...125 MPH...205 KM/H PRESENT MOVEMENT...NW OR 320 DEGREES AT 12 MPH...19 KM/H MINIMUM CENTRAL PRESSURE...944 MB...27.88 INCHES WATCHES AND WARNINGS -------------------- CHANGES WITH THIS ADVISORY: The Hurricane Warning has been extended northward to Altamaha Sound, Georgia, and the Hurricane Watch has been extended northward to South Santee River, South Carolina. SUMMARY OF WATCHES AND WARNINGS IN EFFECT: A Hurricane Warning is in effect for... * Southeastern Bahamas, including the Inaguas, Mayaguana, Acklins, Crooked Island, Long Cay, and Ragged Island * Central Bahamas, including Long Island, Exuma, Rum Cay, San Salvador, and Cat Island * Northwestern Bahamas, including the Abacos, Andros Island, Berry Islands, Bimini, Eleuthera, Grand Bahama Island, and New Providence * North of Golden Beach Florida to Altamaha Sound Georgia * Lake Okeechobee A Hurricane Watch is in effect for... * North of Altamaha Sound to South Santee River South Carolina A Tropical Storm Warning is in effect for... * Chokoloskee to Golden Beach * Florida Keys from Seven Mile Bridge eastward * Florida Bay A Tropical Storm Watch is in effect for... * North of Chokoloskee to Suwannee River A Hurricane Warning means that hurricane conditions are expected somewhere within the warning area. Preparations to protect life and property should be rushed to completion. A Hurricane Watch means that hurricane conditions are possible within the watch area. A watch is typically issued 48 hours before the anticipated first occurrence of tropical-storm-force winds, conditions that make outside preparations difficult or dangerous. A Tropical Storm Watch means that tropical storm conditions are possible within the watch area. Interests elsewhere in the Florida Peninsula, the Florida Keys, and in the Carolinas should monitor the progress of Matthew. For storm information specific to your area in the United States, including possible inland watches and warnings, please monitor products issued by your local National Weather Service forecast office. For storm information specific to your area outside the United States, please monitor products issued by your national meteorological service. DISCUSSION AND 48-HOUR OUTLOOK ------------------------------ At 500 AM EDT (0900 UTC), the center of Hurricane Matthew was located near latitude 24.2 North, longitude 77.1 West. Matthew is moving toward the northwest near 12 mph (19 km/h), and this general motion is expected to continue today. A turn toward the north-northwest is expected tonight. On the forecast track, the eye of Matthew should pass near Andros Island and New Providence in the northwestern Bahamas early this morning, then pass near Grand Bahama Island late today, and move very close to the east coast of the Florida peninsula tonight through Friday night. Reports from an Air Force Reserve Hurricane Hunter aircraft indicate that the maximum sustained winds have increased to near 125 mph (205 km/h) with higher gusts. Matthew is a category 3 hurricane on the Saffir-Simpson Hurricane Wind Scale. Additional strengthening is expected during the next day or so, and Matthew is forecast to be a category 4 hurricane as it approaches the east coast of Florida. Hurricane-force winds extend outward up to 40 miles (65 km) from the center and tropical-storm-force winds extend outward up to 160 miles (260 km). The latest minimum central pressure estimated from reconnaissance aircraft data is 944 mb (27.88 inches). HAZARDS AFFECTING LAND ---------------------- WIND: Hurricane conditions will continue over the central Bahamas and spread into the northwestern Bahamas today. Winds will gradually diminish over the southeastern Bahamas this morning. Hurricane conditions are expected to first reach the hurricane warning area in Florida by late today and will spread northward within the warning area through Friday. Tropical storm conditions are first expected in Florida by late this morning. Hurricane conditions are possible in the hurricane watch area in northeast Georgia and South Carolina by early Saturday, with tropical storm conditions possible on Friday night. Tropical storm conditions are possible in the tropical storm watch area on the Florida Gulf Coast beginning later today. STORM SURGE: The combination of a dangerous storm surge and large and destructive waves could raise water levels by as much as the following amounts above normal tide levels... Central and Northwestern Bahamas...10 to 15 feet The water could reach the following heights above ground if the peak surge occurs at the time of high tide... Sebastian Inlet to Savannah River, including portions of the St. Johns River...6 to 9 ft Savannah River to South Santee River...3 to 5 ft Deerfield Beach to Sebastian Inlet...3 to 5 ft Virginia Key to Deerfield Beach...1 to 3 ft Surge-related flooding depends on the relative timing of the surge and the tidal cycle, and can vary greatly over short distances. Large waves generated by Matthew will cause water rises to occur well in advance of and well away from the track of the center. The combination of a dangerous storm surge and the tide will cause normally dry areas near the coast to be flooded by rising waters moving inland from the shoreline. There is a danger of life- threatening inundation during the next 36 hours along the Florida east coast and Georgia coast from Deerfield Beach to Altamaha Sound. There is the possibility of life-threatening inundation during the next 48 hours from north of Altamaha Sound to South Santee River. For a depiction of areas at risk, please see the Prototype National Weather Service Storm Surge Watch/Warning Graphic. For information specific to your area, please see products issued by your local National Weather Service forecast office. The Prototype Storm Surge Watch/Warning Graphic is a depiction of areas that would qualify for inclusion under a storm surge watch or warning currently under development by the National Weather Service and planned for operational use in 2017. The Prototype Graphic is available at hurricanes.gov. RAINFALL: Matthew is expected to produce total rainfall amounts in the following areas: The Bahamas...8 to 12 inches, isolated totals of 15 inches Coastal eastern Florida, Georgia, and South Carolina....4 to 8 inches, isolated totals of 12 inches The Florida Keys...1 to 3 inches, isolated totals of 5 inches Eastern Cuba...additional 2 to 4 inches, isolated storm-totals of 20 inches Central Cuba...additional 2 to 4 inches, isolated storm-totals of 8 inches Turks and Caicos Islands...less than one additional inch, isolated storm-totals of 8 inches Life-threatening flash floods and mudslides are likely in central and eastern Cuba. SURF: Swells generated by Matthew will continue to affect portions of the north coast of Cuba and the Bahamas during the next few days, and will spread northward along the east coast of Florida and the southeast U.S. coast through the weekend. These swells are likely to cause life-threatening surf and rip current conditions. Please consult products from your local weather office.
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