Stay tuned: Hurricane Center provides Earl updates

Published 8:17 am Thursday, September 2, 2010

Hurricane Earl Update

11 a.m., Friday, Sept. 3, 2010

A “large but weaker” Hurricane Earl continued to move up the East Coast Friday morning, bringing light rain and winds to Suffolk as it made its closest approach to the Virginia coast at around 8 a.m.

At 11 a.m., the Category 1 storm was located about 175 miles northeast of Cape Hatteras, N.C. at latitude 36.8 N and longitude 73.1 W. The hurricane had increased speed to about 21 miles per hour as it headed northeast along the coast.

Maximum sustained winds are near 85 miles per hour, but wind speeds on land were much lower. Hurricane-force winds extend 70 miles from the center, and tropical storm-force winds extend up to 205 miles from the eye.

The hurricane is expected to slowly weaken during the next 24 to 36 hours.

A tropical storm warning was in effect from Ocracoke, N.C. to Sandy Hook, N.J.

According to the National Hurricane Center in Miami, the storm is expected to pick up speed and turn more toward the northeast during the next 12 to 24 hours, approaching southeastern New England something tonight.

A “dangerous” storm surge of two to four feet was expected on the North Carolina coast as well as in the lower Chesapeake Bay.

Rainfall totals of one to two inches are expected around Southeast Virginia. Eastern North Carolina, including the Outer Banks, is expected to have received a total of three to five inches of rain from the storm.