Dorian could affect Suffolk Thursday and Friday

Published 5:42 pm Sunday, September 1, 2019

Suffolk may see some effects from Hurricane Dorian later Thursday into Friday this week, according to the National Weather Service in Wakefield.

Meteorologist Andrew Zimmerman said Hampton Roads residents will want to make sure they have their emergency kit together early this week, if they haven’t done so already.

“Now is the time you want to make sure you get items such as bottled water and batteries, so you’re prepared in advance and not fighting crowds at the last minute,” he said Sunday evening.

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The National Hurricane Center’s 5 p.m. update shows about a 20 to 30 percent chance that Suffolk will see tropical storm force winds from the storm, most likely beginning Thursday evening.

Heavy rain is also likely, although any effects will depend on the exact track of the storm.

On Sunday, Hurricane Dorian, a strong Category 5 storm, devastated portions of the Northwest Bahamas, including the Abaco Islands and Grand Bahama Island.

“It’s expected to slowly track to the west and then later Monday into Tuesday, it’s forecast to make a turn to the north and sort of parallel the coast of Florida,” Zimmerman said Sunday.

After that, the storm is expected to turn to the northeast and “get very close to the Carolina coast,” Zimmerman said, “towards the latter part of the week, Thursday into Friday.”

Zimmerman said wind, rain and the potential for tidal flooding are the main effects Suffolk could see from the storm.

The good news is that the storm will bring limited to no potential for tornadoes to the Hampton Roads area, according to a Sunday morning briefing from the National Weather Service in Wakefield.

Zimmerman said rainfall recently “has been kind of spotty” and that there are some areas in the region “that have been quite dry,” so the danger of mild wind pushing over trees it wouldn’t have otherwise due to saturated ground — as happened with Hurricane Isabel in 2004 — is minimal.