NWS: Shift could bring Dorian closer to CT

With powerful Hurricane Dorian finally moving after stalling in the Bahamas, forecasters are keeping an eye on the Category 2 storm’s next move.

After reaching record-tying wind speeds on landfall in the Bahamas, the storm just stalled. Its eye wall first hit Grand Bahama Island Sunday night, and 18 hours later part of the eye still lingered there, meteorologists said.

The hurricane center late Monday called the storm “stationary” after several hours of crawling at 1 mph.

In its 11 a.m. advisory, the National Hurricane Center said recent radar and aircraft data show that Dorian has finally begun to move northwestward, but dangerous winds and life-threatening storm surge will continue over Grand Bahama Island for much of Tuesday.

Although the official forecast does not show Dorian making landfall along the Florida east coast, the increasing size of Dorian's wind field along with any deviation to the left of the forecast track will bring hurricane-force winds onshore along portions of the Florida east coast.

The NHC said, “Life-threatening storm surge and dangerous winds are expected along portions of the Florida east coast and the coasts of Georgia and South Carolina, regardless of the exact track of Dorian's center. Water levels could begin to rise well in advance of the arrival of strong winds.”

The National Weather Service says the center of Hurricane Dorian is forecast to likely pass well to the southeast of Long Island on Friday.

“A period of sustained northeast winds 20-25 mph with gusts 35-45 mph are possible along the coast, with the higher winds across the forks of Long Island and coastal southeaster Connecticut..Potential exists for a period of moderate to heavy rain across the forks of Long Island and coastal southeast CT.

“If Dorian trends left of the NHC forecast track, stronger winds could occur, and heavier rains could shift farther west into Long Island and CT as well. If the hurricane trends to the right, the wind and rain threat would decrease throughout,” the NWS says.

Along the coast, highest confidence is in an increasing threat for dangerous rip currents, high surf, dune erosion, and minor to locally moderate coastal flood impacts.

For now, the NWS has a 50 percent of rain on Friday for southeastern Connecticut and just a 30 percent chance or rain for western Connecticut.

The NWS Boston office said hurricane or tropical storm conditions are possible on Friday on Cape Cod, Martha’s Vineyard and Nantucket.

Stay tuned.

The forecast

Today: Sunny, with a high near 79. Calm wind becoming north around 5 mph.

Tonight: Patchy fog after 2 a.m. Otherwise, increasing clouds, with a low around 64. South wind 3 to 5 mph.

Wednesday: A 40 percent chance of showers and thunderstorms after noon. Partly sunny, with a high near 81. Southwest wind 7 to 11 mph, with gusts as high as 21 mph.

Wednesday Night: A chance of showers and thunderstorms before midnight, then a slight chance of showers between midnight and 3 a.m. Partly cloudy, with a low around 60. West wind around 7 mph becoming north after midnight. Chance of precipitation is 40 percent.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.