Hurricane Ophelia Expected Path North Along Atlantic Coast from
North and South Carolina
September 14th 2005
is moving towards North Carolina with 85 MPH sustained winds. A
hurricane warning is in effect from the Little River Inlet northward
to the North Carolina / Virginia Border, including the Pamlico and
Albemarle Sounds. A warning means the hurricane is expected to hit
within 24 hours.
A hurricane watch
and tropical storm warning remain in effect north of the North
Carolina / Virginia border to Cape Charles Light Virginia, including
the Chesapeake Bay south of New Point Comfort. A topical storm
warning means a tropical storm is expected within 36 hours.
As of 9PM Eastern
Time the National Weather Service reports that the center of the
storm is located about 35 miles south-southwest of Cape Lookout
North Carolina. Ophelia is moving is moving erratically
east-northeast at 7 MPH. This motion is expected to continue for
the next 24 hours.
The center of
Ophelia is expected to cross over or very near Cape Lookout within
the next several hours. The northern eyewall will continue to pass
over the North Carolina coast for much of tonight and most of
Ophelia is a
category one hurricane on the Saffir-Simpson scale with some gusts
reaching up to 92 MPH. Winds are expected to increase over the
night. The hurricane force winds extend outward 50 miles from the
center and tropical storm winds extend out 140 miles from the
The storm surge is
5 to 7 feet above normal, and may reach 9 to 11 feet above normal.
Ophelia is expected to produce 4 to 8 inches of rain in portions of
eastern North Carolina during the next 24 hours with 15 inches
possible with possible isolated tornadoes.
Governor Mike Easley and Virginia Governor Mark Warner have declared
a state of emergency. This will free up resources before the storm
hits. Schools were closed in 22 North Carolina counties. The
National Guard has been called up for storm response.
Easley said the
damage may be worse than Hurricane Isabel in 2003 or Alex in 2004
because Ophelia is moving slower. ``If you have been asked to
evacuate, please do so, because these floods will be worse than
anticipated yesterday,'' Easley said in a televised news conference.
When high winds arrive, ``we cannot come in to get you.''
ordered evacuations of low lying flood-prone areas in six counties
and voluntary evacuations elsewhere. South Carolina has also
advised some residents to evacuate according to Bloomberg News.
This storm has
already caused 78,000 electric customers to lose power. About 50
shelters have been opened up housing 1,300 people in North
Carolina. South Carolina has also begun to open up shelters in
Charleston, Horry and Georgetown counties.
Ophelia is the 15th
names storm of the Atlantic hurricane season. It began as a
tropical depression on September 6th and became a
hurricane on the 8th.
After it brushes
the North Carolina coast, Ophelia is forecast to move northeast into
open water by the weekend. According the National Weather Service
projections the storm will continue northeast along the Atlantic
Coast towards New York and Maine.
Ophelia is the
15th named storm of the June 1 to Nov. 30 Atlantic hurricane season.
It began as a tropical depression on Sept. 6, strengthening a day
later to a tropical storm. It first became a hurricane on Sept. 8,
then weakened back to a storm and strengthened again to a hurricane
three times, most recently yesterday.
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Best Syndication Staff Writer
Keywords and misspellings: Hurricane huricane
Ophelia Ophilia Ofelia Ofilia