Severe Weather Update: Alerts Cancelled
Update on Tropical Storm Hermine, Friday, September 2, 2016, 7:45 PM:
The center of Hermine was about 120 miles southwest of Myrtle Beach, according to Michael Caropolo, Meteorologist in Charge at the National Weather Service in Wilmington. The rain we’re seeing now is definitely part of the Tropical Storm Hermine system – which will be moving through the Cape Fear region in the next couple of hours.
In anticipation of the storm, meteorologists have been warning members of the public about maximum sustained winds of 40-45 MPH onshore -- gusting up to 50 MPH. The danger here is that unsecured items turn into projectiles, and trees and power lines come down.
But the NWS' Michael Caropolo said, so far, winds have not been the severe threat they expected.
"Well, right now, the winds haven’t really materialized. We're closer to the center, so the winds are lighter near the center of the storm. And the stronger winds are out over the water with the rain bands and further to our west right now. Some of the heavier rain bands are moving across the inland areas of North Carolina and South Carolina."
Does that mean this area dodged a bullet, wind-wise?
"Well, along the coast it's really going to be associated with the rain bands moving across. It's not going to be a continuous several hours of strong winds. They're just going to kind of come in bursts with those rain bands. So we have escaped most of these stronger sustained winds with this sytem, so far..."
Caropolo says he's still concerned about isolated tornadoes in some of these rain bands. He anticipates a complete exit of Hermine between 4 and 7 am on Saturday.
In the meantime, it's not a night to go out.
Southeastern North Carolina and northeastern South Carolina are under a Tropical Storm Warning expected to last through Saturday morning, and a Flash Flood Watch until 8 am Saturday. A Tornado Watch is in effect for Brunswick and Columbus Counties in North Carolina and Horry County in South Carolina.
Hermine has been downgraded from a hurricane back to a tropical storm as she moves across Georgia today and into the Eastern Carolinas late Friday afternoon through early Saturday morning. Periods of very heavy rain and tropical storm force wind gusts are expected during this time.