5 dead as Hurricane Dorian slams into the Bahamas
Prime Minister Hubert Minnis said initial reports indicate that the devastation in the Abaco Islands is "unprecedented" and many buildings have been "completely or partially destroyed."
“We are in the midst of a historic tragedy in parts of our northern Bahamas," Minnis told reporters at the National Emergency Management Agency (NEMA) headquarters on Monday.
He said a number of injured people have been rescued by first responders and taken to a hospital on New Providence island.
“Our mission and focus now is search, rescue and recovery. I ask for your prayers for those in affected areas and for our first responders."
The Prime Minister urged residents to remain indoors as Dorian is expected to continue battering Grand Bahama island for "many hours."
Bristol Motor Speedway will open its Medallion Campground tomorrow at noon to Hurricane Dorian evacuees.
"BMS will once again open its campgrounds to hurricane evacuees. Evacuees may access the Medallion Campground off Hwy 394 beginning tomorrow, Sept. 3 at noon and are encouraged to call toll free 866.415.4158 for more information. Our thoughts and prayers are with those in the path of Hurricane Dorian," the company said in a Facebook post.
The speedway has opened its campgrounds for evacuees from past storms, such as Hurricane Irma and Florence.
The decision by Bristol follows similar ones made by Atlanta Motor Speedway Friday and Charlotte Motor Speedway in North Carolina today. Both speedways have opened their facilities for evacuees free of charge.
Hurricane Dorian has killed five people on the Abaco Islands of the Bahamas, the Prime Minister told reporters Monday afternoon.
Gov. Ralph Northam has declared a state of emergency in advance of Hurricane Dorian, which is expected to impact southeastern Virginia Thursday.
The impact from Dorian could include coastal and inland flooding, storm surge, damaging winds and prolonged power outages, the governor's office said in a news release Monday afternoon.
“Hurricane Dorian is a serious storm, and current predictions indicate that it may affect parts of Virginia. I am declaring a state of emergency to ensure that localities and communities have the appropriate level of assistance, and to coordinate the Commonwealth’s response to any potential impacts from Hurricane Dorian. I encourage Virginians to take all necessary precautions to make sure they are prepared as well," Northam said.
A state of emergency allows the Commonwealth to mobilize resources and to deploy people and equipment to assist in response and recovery efforts, the governor's office added. The declaration also allows officials from Virginia to coordinate planning and evacuation resources with the state of North Carolina.
This action does not apply to individuals or private businesses.
Walt Disney World is adjusting its hours Tuesday ahead of Hurricane Dorian, which is expected to get close to Florida this evening.
Disney resort hotels will remain open, but Disney’s Fort Wilderness Resort and Campground will be closed beginning Tuesday at 3 p.m. ET and will reopen following the storm when it is safe to do so.
Here are the other adjustments being made around Disney on Tuesday:
- Magic Kingdom Park: 8 a.m.-3 p.m. (opening at 7 a.m. for Extra Magic Hours)
- Epcot: 7 a.m.-3 p.m.
- Disney’s Hollywood Studios: 9 a.m.-2 p.m. (opening at 6 a.m. for Extra Magic Hours)
- Disney’s Animal Kingdom: 8 a.m.-2 p.m. (opening at 7 a.m. for Extra Magic Hours)
- Disney Springs: 10 a.m.-3 p.m.
- ESPN Wide World of Sports: Closed
- Disney’s Blizzard Beach Water Park: Closed
- Disney’s Typhoon Lagoon Water Park: 10 a.m.-3 p.m.
- Winter Summerland Miniature Golf: 10 a.m.-3 p.m.
- Fantasia Gardens Miniature Golf: 10 a.m.- 3 p.m.
Pilots with the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration flew through the eye of Dorian.
A team of hurricane hunters aboard the Lockheed WP-3D Orion N42RF, also known as "Kermit," recorded a video of the powerful storm.
Here's the video:
Dorian is moving very little as it continues to pound Grand Bahama island, the National Hurricane Center said in its 5 p.m. ET update.
The storm is slowly moving westward at a rate of less than 1 mph.
A turn to the northwest is forecast by late Tuesday, with a northeast movement forecast to begin by Wednesday night.
The hurricane warning has been extended north to Ponte Vedra Beach, Florida. The storm surge watch and hurricane watch has been extended north to South Santee River, South Carolina.
With Hurricane Dorian expected to get close to Florida this evening, it's probably worth brushing up on the differences between a hurricane watch and warning.
The National Weather Service has provided some clear definitions for each; check them out below:
- Storm surge warning: There is a danger of life-threatening inundation from rising water moving inland from the shoreline somewhere within the specified area, generally within 36 hours. If you are under a storm surge warning, check for evacuation orders from your local officials.
- Storm surge watch: There is a possibility of life-threatening inundation from rising water moving inland from the shoreline somewhere within the specified area, generally within 48 hours.
- Hurricane warning: Hurricane conditions (sustained winds of 74 mph or greater) are expected somewhere within the specified area. NHC issues a hurricane warning 36 hours in advance of tropical storm-force winds to give you time to complete your preparations. All preparations should be complete. Evacuate immediately if so ordered.
- Hurricane watch: Hurricane conditions (sustained winds of 74 mph or greater) are possible within your area. Because it may not be safe to prepare for a hurricane once winds reach tropical storm force, The NHC issues hurricane watches 48 hours before it anticipates tropical storm-force winds.
- Tropical storm warning: Tropical storm conditions (sustained winds of 39 to 73 mph) are expected within your area within 36 hours.
- Tropical storm watch: Tropical storm conditions (sustained winds of 39 to 73 mph) are possible within the specified area within 48 hours.
Orlando International will "cease commercial operations" at 2 a.m. ET on Tuesday, the airport announced on Twitter.
The airport's region is currently under a Tropical Storm watch, the statement said, and is expecting winds between 40 and 45 mph.
The airport encouraged passengers to contact their individual airlines about changes to their flight schedule.
Read the statement: