Hurricane Earl – update #2
As of the 8pm EST advisory by the National Hurricane Center, Hurricane Earl is situated about 160 miles off the coast of Cape Hatteras, North Carolina and moving towards the north at 18 mph. HURRICANE WARNINGS exist for most of the North Carolina coastline along with Cape Cod and Massachusetts Bay including the city of Boston. TROPICAL STORM WARNINGS exist for most of the coastline between North Carolina and Rhode Island, including Long Island, New York. TROPICAL STORM WATCHES exist for the coastline from northern Massachusetts to Maine to New Brunswick, Canada.
Maximum sustained winds have decreased to 110 mph, making Hurricane Earl a strong Category Two storm on the Saffir-Simpson Hurricane Scale. The storm is expected to take a slight turn to the northeast on Friday morning, most likely keeping the eyewall offshore and giving the North Carolina coastline a glancing blow and not a direct hit. Hurricane force winds have been measured 70 miles away from the center of the storm, and tropical storm force winds exist outwards of 205 miles.
The NHC forecast is calling for Hurricane Earl to experience moderate weakening over the next 24 hours from a combination of wind shear and moving into colder water. Right now it’s questionable if it’ll retain its hurricane status by the time it makes landfall somewhere over New Brunswick or Nova Scotia, Canada. The main question that remains is if the storm will pass over Cape Cod, Massachusetts, or if it’ll stay out at sea until it reaches Canada.
The good thing for the residents and business owners along the northeast coast is that it’s better to be on the left side of the tropical cyclone than the right side. The wind are commonly not as intense and the storm surge is kept to a minimum, if it even exists. The strong winds of the counter-clockwise rotation is the primary driving force behind the wall of water known as the storm surge, though the low pressure in the center of the storm can also help bring water onto the shore.
The residents of the North Carolina coastline will be in for a windy, rainy night, but fortunately for them, they will not be experiencing the brunt of a Category Four hurricane, or even a Category Two storm for that matter. It’ll be interesting to see how much of an impact the storm will have on Cape Cod and residents of Boston, Mass. It’s not every day that they get to experience even a glancing blow from a hurricane.