Dorian stays on track as Category 4 hurricane

Dorian stays on track as Category 4 hurricane

By John Gaughan - Chief meteorologist, Rebecca Barry - Meteorologist, Mark Collins - Meteorologist

What we know includes: Dorian is now a Category 2 hurricane.

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. - Dorian, which strengthened into a Category 1 hurricane Wednesday afternoon, is projected to reach Category 4 strength before it makes landfall along Florida's East Coast on Labor Day.

Dorian will become a "dangerous" major hurricane sooner than later, according to the National Hurricane Center.

Hurricane hunters discovered a remarkable drop in the central pressure of Dorian on Thursday -- an indication that rapid intensification may take place over the next day or so.

The storm is expected to intensify into a Category 4 hurricane on Sunday as it sets its sights Florida. Hurricane hunters found sustained winds of 105 mph.

  Tracking Dorian

As of 11 p.m. Thursday, Dorian was moving northwest near 12 mph and this general motion is expected to continue through Friday. On this track, Dorian should move over the Atlantic well east of the southeastern and central Bahamas on Thursday and Friday and approach the northwestern Bahamas on Saturday.

The timing of landfall was pushed to Monday afternoon, although still in the southern half of the state. The entire peninsula of Florida is within the forecast cone.

Because the track landfall calls for the storm to turn north and forward motion slow down, this could be bring flooding rains into the greater Jacksonville area later next week.

What we know includes: Dorian is now a Category 2 hurricane.

VIDEO: Rebecca explains what the 2 main hurricane models mean for our area

Potential impacts for greater Jacksonville:

  • Coast Flood Advisory through the weekend for potential minor flooding during high tides.
  • Dorian may threaten the region mid-week. 
  • Local tides will already be astronomically elevated through the weekend due to the New Moon.
  • Excessive rainfall potential exists if Dorian passes over or west/south of the area, putting the area on the "wet" side of the storm.

RESOURCE: Know your flood/evacuation zone

Copyright 2019 by WJXT News4Jax. The Associated Press contributed to this report. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.