Dorian intensifies with sustained winds of 180 mph; high rip current risk today along OBX

Hurricane Dorian satellite image, NOAA, Sept. 1, 2019

Hurricane Dorian, now a Category 5 hurricane, intensified this morning with “catastrophic” sustained winds of 180 mph and gusts up to 200 mph on approach to the Abaco Islands and Grand Bahama, the National Hurricane Center reported in its 9:30 a.m. update.

National Hurricane Center cone of probability for Dorian, Sept. 1, 2019.

Locally, the storm will create dangerous surf conditions and hazardous seas along the Outer Banks today and through next weekend.

“Beachgoers and boaters should use extreme caution,” the National Weather Service Newport/Morehead City office said in its morning briefing.

The office says the threat for a prolonged period of heavy rainfall across eastern North Carolina next week is increasing, regardless of Dorian’s track. N.C. Emergency Management this morning said the threat of flooding rain, strong wind and dangerous storm surge is increasing for eastern North Carolina.

“… While the probability of tropical storm force winds has also increased, details on the wind and storm surge threats remain uncertain and highly track-dependent,” the office said in its morning briefing.

On Ocracoke Island, emergency management officials ask that residents still in need of re-entry passes to come to the community center on Monday 9 a.m. to noon. Please bring any documents needed with you.

Hyde County’s Ocracoke Control Group will meet tonight at 6 p.m. to discuss protective measures, including evacuations.

Stay with for the latest updates on Hurricane Dorian.

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Kari Pugh is digital director for, Beach 104, 99.1 The Sound, 94.5 WCMS and News Talk 92.3 WZPR. Reach her at