Hurricane Dorian - The Latest

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Hurricane Dorian lingers off North Carolina coast

FBN's Jeff Flock with the latest on Hurricane Dorian.

This is FOX Business continuous' update on the latest about Hurricane Dorian:

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8:23 pm ET Friday

President Trump takes to Twitter to ask cruise ship companies to assist in helping the Bahamas following the devastation from the hurricane.

7:33 pm ET Friday

Sen. Marco Rubio of Florida says the U.S. government-run aid agency has formally requested that the Department of Defense provide heavy-lift aerial support to bring in desperately needed aid to Abaco Island in the Bahamas. Rubio tweeted Friday that their first task will be finding an open airfield. Earlier today Rubio and his colleague Sen. Rick Scott flew with the U.S. Coast Guard to the Bahamas along with Gov. Ron DeSantis of Florida to survey the damage.

4:47 pm ET Friday

South Carolina Gov. Henry McMaster has lifted the remaining evacuation orders for Berkeley, Charleston, Dorchester, Georgetown and Horry counties. The removal of the evacuation will allow residents who left the state's coastal areas ahead of Hurricane Dorian to return home starting tonight.

3:05 pm ET Friday

North Carolina firefighters rescued one of their own as Hurricane Dorian bore down on the state Thursday night.

Northwood’s Fire & Rescue, located in Lumberton, posted on Facebook that a 19-year-old firefighter was driving to work at a fire station when a falling tree hit his pickup, trapping him inside.

Emergency workers freed the man and drove him to an area hospital, where he was treated for injuries that weren't life-threatening.

The fire department posted an update Friday saying he had been released from the hospital and was recovering at home. The firefighter is scheduled to begin training for a career in law enforcement later this month.

2:25 pm ET Friday

Utility crews are working to restore electrical service to areas blasted by Hurricane Dorian.

As of Friday afternoon, Duke Energy had turned power back on for more than 100,000 of its 209,000 affected customers in North Carolina. Officials said there were still about 179,000 outages across the state as of 2:20 p.m.

The hardest-hit areas were Brunswick, Carteret, Craven, Jones, New Hanover, Onslow and Pamlico counties, all in eastern North Carolina, the utility company said.

Duke Energy and Dominion Energy said they had each staged thousands of repair workers ahead of the storm, but fully restoring electrical service may take several days.

“Even if you don’t see our trucks, we are working to restore power,” said Jason Hollifield, Duke Energy’s incident commander for the Carolinas. “In the early going, many of the repairs that need to be made are located outside of residential neighborhoods as we work to restore substations, transmission lines and main distribution lines.”

12:45 pm ET Friday

A North Carolina man watched from 130 miles away as a tornado spawned by Hurricane Dorian tore his Emerald Isle residence off its foundation.

Jason Sawyer posted a video on Facebook of the destruction, which was captured by a Ring doorbell camera on his dwelling at the Boardwalk RV park.

The sound of the tornado “really shakes you to the core,” Sawyer told local TV station WRAL.

Sawyer and his wife were home in Raeford, a city further inland, watching a video feed from the area when the tornado hit. They’d just purchased the beach property in March.

“We weren’t sure what we were going to come back to, but we sure didn’t expect this,” he told WRAL.

11:50 am ET Friday

The owner of a red Jeep caught in the tide as Hurricane Dorian rolled through Myrtle Beach, South Carolina, on Thursday said the vehicle had been abandoned there by his cousin.

Local news station WMBF reported that the owner, whom it didn’t identify, had lent the Jeep to his cousin, who wanted to shoot a video of the sunrise before the storm.

The Jeep quickly got stuck in the sand, the man said. And with the storm blowing in, no one was able to help tow the SUV off the beach.

The man told reporters that he didn’t even know what had happened to his Jeep until police showed up at his home.

The cousin “avoided me for a good hour or two because he didn’t know what to say,” the man said.

The owner lamented the loss of his “awesome Jeep.”

“It’s probably going to end up being totaled,” he said. “I didn’t want it totaled.”

11:40 am ET Friday

National Hurricane Center forecasters are warning North Carolina and Virginia residents about life-threatening storm surges, flash floods and dangerous winds expected to continue for several hours.

Ken Graham, director of the center, said Hurricane Dorian was picking up speed, moving northeast at 17 mph. Parts of North Carolina were seeing a storm surge of 4 to 7 feet, while further north in the Norfolk and Virginia Beach areas, storm surges of 2-4 feet were expected.

Soil is already saturated from rain, and 3 to 4 more inches were predicted in many areas, Graham said.

As the storm continues to move northeast, parts of New England will likely feel the effects. Cape Cod and coastal Maine may experience tropical storm conditions, Graham said. A National Hurricane Center map showed Dorian’s eye passing Cape Cod by 8 a.m. Saturday.

Forecasters also warned that dangerous storm surges could continue north into Canada, reaching the Gulf of St. Lawrence and affecting southwestern Newfoundland and eastern Nova Scotia this weekend.

11:15 am ET Friday

South Carolina Gov. Henry McMaster lifted all remaining evacuation orders Friday morning.

Residents will be able to return to Charleston, Berkeley, Dorchester, Georgetown and Horry counties, effective immediately, though officials warned travelers to  expect lengthy travel times, blocked roads and detours.

Drivers should watch for fallen trees and power lines as well as standing water in or near roads, officials advised.

McMaster lifted evacuation orders for Jasper, Beaufort and Colleton counties a day earlier. The governor’s order also restores authority to local school districts to determine closings. Officials said all state government offices in the evacuated counties will return to normal operations Monday.

10:30 am ET Friday

Hundreds of people may be trapped by high water on Ocracoke Island as Hurricane Dorian batters North Carolina, Gov. Roy Cooper said.

Rescue teams are ready to move in as soon as possible, the governor added during a briefing on Friday morning. With 4 to 7 feet of storm surge expected and a strong likelihood of flash flooding, he advised residents to go to the highest points in their homes.

Island resident Leslie Lanier told the Associated Press via text message that some residents had sheltered in their attics, and the water level had started to drop.

While Dorian spawned more than a dozen tornadoes that caused “significant damage” after making landfall earlier Friday, Cooper said there were no reports of serious injuries. The National Weather Service hasn’t confirmed the number of twisters.

About 215,000 power outages occurred across the state, and more than 70 roads were impassable due to flooding or debris. The state opened 78 shelters, Cooper said, and 4,500 people stayed in them Thursday night.

An evacuation order for barrier islands in southeastern North Carolina was lifted Friday morning, but they remained in effect for other areas. Cooper said residents should follow instructions from local officials to return home safely.

10:00 am ET Friday

Early estimates indicate Hurricane Dorian caused at least $7 billion worth of damage in the Bahamas. Catastrophe-modeling business Karen Clark & Company released the estimate after analyzing wind and water damage that it said caused “catastrophic” losses. The estimate didn’t include damage to infrastructure or autos.

Bahamian officials said at least 23 people were killed in the storm, and that figure is expected to rise as workers assess the full extent of the storm’s damage.

“We are extremely saddened by the loss of life, homes destroyed and landscape damaged,” officials said in a statement. “The spirit and resolve of our people remains strong, and we will continue to help everyone impacted.”

9:20 am ET Friday

Dorian has made landfall in North Carolina.

The hurricane hit Cape Hatteras at 8:35 a.m., according to the National Hurricane Center. Maximum sustained winds were near 90 mph, and the storm was moving northeast at 14 mph.

State officials advised anyone in the area to stay indoors. Dangerous conditions from wind and water were expected to remain throughout the day for most of coastal North Carolina.

8:25 am ET Friday

Dorian’s eye was passing near Cape Hatteras, North Carolina, and moving northeast at 14 mph Friday morning, according to the National Hurricane Center. A hurricane warning remained in effect for the Category 1 storm from Surf City to the Virginia border and the Pamlico and Albemarle sounds.

North Carolina Emergency Management officials anticipated that 4 to 7 feet of storm surge would cause water levels to rise rapidly on the sounds, especially near the Outer Banks. Inland flooding was also possible with 10 inches or more of rain forecast east of Interstate 95, the artery connecting states along the eastern seaboard.

Strong winds were expected to down trees and cause power outages, officials said, and tornadoes were possible.

State transportation officials had already closed 73 roads as of 6 a.m., including 17 “primary routes.”

5:00 am ET Friday

The eye of Hurricane Dorian is passing just east of Cape Lookout as the Category 1 storm skirts North Carolina's coast.

Sustained, hurricane-force winds are battering the southern Outer Banks, a 200-mile-long chain of low-lying barrier islands and spits off North Carolina. The center of the storm is around 25 miles east of Cape Lookout and 55 miles southwest of Cape Hatteras, further north in the Outer Banks.

Top sustained winds are near 90 mph and the storm is moving northeast at 14 mph.

3:10 am ET  Friday

The U.S. National Hurricane Center in Miami is reporting hurricane-force winds "just offshore" of Cape Lookout, part of the low-lying islands that make up North Carolina's Outer Banks.

The Category 1 storm is located about 25 miles (40 kilometers) south-southwest of Cape Lookout, and 90 miles (145 kilometers) southwest of Cape Hatteras, further north on the string of barrier islands and spits.

Top sustained winds remain at 90 mph (145 kph) and the storm is moving northeast at 14 mph (23 kph).

The storm is expected to weaken slowly over the next few days, but will likely remain a powerful hurricane as it moves along the coast of North Carolina.

1:39 am ET Friday

U.S. National Hurricane Center: Dorian has weakened to a Category 1 storm, with top sustained winds of 90 mph. Dorian is closing in for a possible direct hit Friday on North Carolina's Outer Banks, a string of low-lying islands.

11:00 pm ET Thursday

Hurricane Dorian sideswiped the Carolinas with shrieking winds, tornadoes and sideways rain Thursday as it closed in for a possible direct hit on the dangerously exposed Outer Banks, accoridng to the Associated Press. At least four deaths in the Southeast were blamed on the storm.

Twisters spun off by Dorian peeled away roofs and flipped trailers, and more than 267,000 homes and businesses were left without power as the hurricane pushed north along the coastline, its winds weakening after sunset to 100 mph. Trees and power lines littered flooded streets in Charleston's historic downtown. Gusts had topped 80 mph in some areas.

10:31 pm ET Thursday 

There are now 267,680 customers without power in North Carolina and South Carolina, according to blackout tracking site poweroutage.us.

10:27 p,m. ET Thursday

The death toll in the Bahamas in the aftermath of Hurricane Dorian has risen to 30, according to multiple reports.

7:49 p.m. ET Thursday

President Trump took to Twitter Thursday night after several phone calls to governors in states directly in Hurricane Dorian's path, expressing solidarity and urging people along the lower eastern seaboard to remain safe.

Trump spoke to Govs. Brian Kemp of Georgia, Henry McMaster of South Carolina and Roy Cooper of North Carolina, while praising Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis, Florida Sens. Marco Rubio and Rick Scott, as well as FEMA, the U.S. Coast Guard, and local law enforcement for their preparation and response efforts.

6:50 p.m. ET Thursday

Forecasters are warning that Dorian could run straight over North Carolina's Outer Banks -- the thin line of islands that stick out from the U.S. coast -- late Thursday or early Friday. Coastal Virginia is also projected in harm's way and a round of evacuations was ordered in that state. The National Hurricane Center forecast as much as 15 inches of rain for the coastal Carolinas, with flash-flooding likely.  "We have a long night ahead of us," North Carolina Gov. Roy Cooper told residents of his state, according to the Associated Press. "Everyone needs to stay in a safe place and off the roads until the storm passes."

3:11 p.m. ET Thursday

Three deaths in Florida are being blamed on Hurricane Dorian.

A 68-year-old Brevard County man fell to his death while putting up hurricane shutters Sunday, the Associated Press reported. Two other men died in the state while preparing for the storm, as did one in North Carolina.

Earlier, Florida officials said one man's death at a storm shelter may be due to natural causes

3:00 p.m. ET Thursday

Utility company Dominion Energy is advising customers in the Carolinas and Virginia to be ready for multi-day power outages caused by Hurricane Dorian.

The slow-moving storm "could cause high winds and flooding in our region, leading to significant damage,” the company wrote on Facebook on Thursday afternoon.

Dominion said it was coordinating a response to the storm across multiple states and that crews were staged to assess damage and restore power as soon as weather conditions allow.

Dorian’s eye was just south of Myrtle Beach, South Carolina, and moving north-northeast at about 8 mph, according to the National Hurricane Center.

Forecasters said hurricane conditions would continue northeast of Charleston for several more hours. Tropical storm conditions were spreading along the coast of North Carolina, with hurricanes expected to follow.

North Carolina Emergency Management officials said there’s a risk of tornadoes as the storm passes over the state. Anyone in areas subject to tornado warnings should go to a basement or room with no windows and avoid sheltering in mobile homes.

Dorian’s center is expected to reach North Carolina overnight, and then move southeast of New England on Friday night and Saturday morning, forecasters said.

2:24 p.m. ET Thursday

South Carolina Gov. Henry McMaster said mandatory evacuation orders will be lifted for three southern counties at 3 p.m., but warned that Hurricane Dorian is still “hitting hard” in other areas.

Residents will be able to return to Jasper, Beaufort and Colleton counties at the discretion of local authorities, McMaster said during a briefing Thursday afternoon. Evacuation orders in five other counties remained in place, as did mandatory school closings on Friday.

Officials confirmed tornadoes touched down in North Myrtle Beach and Little River. Strong winds were expected to continue along the coast into the night, with gusts hitting 75 to 80 mph. More than 9 inches of rain had already hit in some areas, with as much as 15 inches expected. Water was steadily rising in some places, and the storm surge was expected to worsen as high tide rolled in Thursday afternoon.

McMaster said there have been reports of downed power lines, standing water on roads, limbs and other debris and power outages.

“We urge everybody to stay inside,” he said. “If you don’t need to be out, don’t go out. Stay off the streets; it’s very dangerous.”

About 441,000 South Carolina residents evacuated, officials said. There were 35 shelters open with a total of 2,484 people staying in them as of 2 p.m. Over 250,000 power outages occurred in homes and businesses as of 10 p.m.

No storm-related deaths have been confirmed in the state.

1:27 p.m. ET Thursday

Myrtle Beach Mayor Brenda Bethune is warning residents of the coastal South Carolina city to stay inside as Hurricane Dorian moves up the coast.

With high tide coming Thursday afternoon, the biggest concern locally was the storm surge, which Bethune told FOX Business was comparable to that of Hurricane Matthew. There were also reports of downed trees, power outages -- which the mayor said crews hadn’t been able to fully assess yet -- and nearby tornadoes.

Anyone who sees water should stay out of it, because it’s hard to tell how deep it is or what’s under it, Bethune added.

“Residents need to stay inside,” she said. “We don’t know when the conditions are going to change. It’s not the time to be riding around seeing what’s going on or to get a photo op.”

1:00pm ET Thursday

Charleston officials said 148 trees and 36 power lines and cables were reported down by noon Thursday as Hurricane Dorian battered the region.

The South Carolina city reported 108 road closings, including 26 necessitated by flooding. Forecasters say 7 to 15 inches of rain is expected, plus a storm surge.

Charleston officials said they had mobilized assessment teams to identify impacted areas and storm-related damage.

In North Carolina, officials said some areas could see 7 feet of storm surge. Utility company Duke Energy said it had staged about 1,500 crews in Raleigh to be dispatched to hard-hit areas once it’s safe to go out.

11:48am ET Thursday

Dorian weakened to a Category 2 hurricane again, with winds slowing to 110 mph, but officials warned it would still wreak havoc in the Carolinas.

Ken Graham, director of the National Hurricane Center, said in an update Thursday morning that a storm surge from 2 to 4 feet had blown in around the Charleston, South Carolina area. Myrtle Beach, which lies north of the region, would likely face a storm surge of 5 to 8 feet while North Carolina might be hit by 4 to 7 feet, he said.

The eye of Dorian was just off the eastern coast of South Carolina and moving north-northeast at about 8 mph at midday. Forecasters said it would reach North Carolina overnight and begin to move away from the coast by Friday evening.

The storm claimed at least one life before even reaching North Carolina: An 85-year-old man was killed when he fell from a ladder while preparing his home for hurricane-force winds, said Gov. Roy Cooper.

“We really are very sorry and are thinking about this family,” Cooper said.

Dorian previously killed at least 20 people in the Bahamas, and Florida officials received reports of two deaths that may have been related.

In North Carolina, tornadoes had already touched down in Brunswick County and Emerald Isle, officials said.

11:00am ET Thursday

Gov. Roy Cooper warned residents on Thursday to flee to a safe location and stay there as Hurricane Dorian bore down on North Carolina.

The storm “is ready to unleash its fury on our state,” he said, and officials expect significant damage along the shore and further inland.

State transportation officials said ports were closed after evacuations of the Outer Banks were completed. Several sections of U.S. 17 were shut between Leland and Shallotte because of debris on the road, and dozens of school districts suspended classes. Fifty shelters opened as of Thursday morning.

Mike Sprayberry, the North Carolina Emergency Management director, said the state has deployed 23 swift water rescue teams, 53 boats, 178 National Guard vehicles, seven urban search and rescue teams, nine ambulance strike teams and 16 search-and-rescue aircraft.

South Carolina Emergency Management officials received reports of damage and downed trees in the Lowcountry, and tree limbs and other detritus closed at least two portions of Interstate 26. There were 33 shelters open across the state.

In Georgia, Gov. Brian Kemp lifted the mandatory evacuation order for all counties as of 9:30 a.m. Transportation officials said the Sidney Lanier Bridge, which carries U.S. 17 over the Brunswick River, was reopened after an inspection.

10:15am ET Thursday

Florida is fortunate Hurricane Dorian didn’t hit the state harder, Gov. Ron DeSantis said.

During a news conference Thursday morning, DeSantis described the storm as “a close call" because it slowed before hitting Florida but has strengthened since moving north.

“There will be damage, but the damage will be less than what was experienced during Hurricane Matthew,” he said.

At least two deaths may be related to the storm, DeSantis said: one person who died while trimming trees and another who died at a storm shelter of possibly natural causes.

“I think we all did the right thing to take this storm very seriously and prepare accordingly,” he said.

Other states in Dorian's path haven't requested aid from Florida, DeSantis said, but he's prepared to offer it. The governor is also looking into ways the state can provide relief to parts of the Bahamas that were “absolutely leveled” by the storm, including mobilizing the National Guard if the federal government asks and sharing part of a stockpile of hundreds of thousands of water bottles.

As Dorian swept up the coast Thursday, the National Hurricane Center warned it could bring a life-threatening storm surge, winds, heavy rainfall and tornadoes to parts of the Carolinas.

The South Carolina Emergency Management Division reported more than 202,000 power outages statewide Thursday morning. In North Carolina, officials said there were more than 3,100 outages, and power company Duke Energy has projected that Dorian could cause more than 700,000 in the eastern Carolinas.

8:30am ET Thursday

The eye of Dorian was centered about 70 miles southeast of Charleston, South Carolina and was moving north-northeast with a hurricane warning in place from the Savannah River to the North Carolina/Virginia border, according to the National Weather Service. Tropical storm conditions were affecting parts of the Georgia and South Carolina coasts with hurricane conditions expected to follow.

Officials with the National Hurricane Center are warning of likely flooding with 6 to 10 inches of rain expected in inland areas and 10 to 15 inches expected along the coast. Rivers, creeks and canals will likely flood. Storm surges could reach as high as  5 to 8 feet in some areas, which will affect barrier islands, inlets and even rivers, hurricane center director Ken Graham said.

6:00am ET Thursday

Hurricane Dorian, back to a Category 3 storm, began raking the southeastern U.S. seaboard early Thursday, according to the Associated Press. The storm has left tens of thousands without power as it threatened to inundate low-lying coasts from Georgia to Virginia with a life-threatening storm surge after mauling the Bahamas.

2:01 am ET Thursday

Dorian is expected to bring damaging winds and life-threatening storm surges along large portions of the southeastern and mid-Atlantic coasts of the U.S. during the next several days. The National Hurricane Center says some fluctuations in Dorian's intensity are expected this morning, followed by slow weakening through Saturday.

11:14 pm ET Wednesday

Hurricane Dorian gained strength, becoming a Category 3 storm, according to the National Hurricane Center. Category 3 means winds of 115 mph.

10:15 pm ET Wednesday

Dorian is centered about 130 miles south of Charleston, South Carolina, moving north at 8 mph. Hurricane-force winds extended up to 70 miles, according to the National Hurricane Center. A hurricane warning extends from north of the Savannah River in Georgia up to the North Carolina-Virginia border.

8:48 pm ET Wednesday

The storm was downgraded from a Category 5 to a Category 2 -- but still had dangerously high winds and threatened to swamp low-lying regions from Georgia to southeastern Virginia on its trek northward.

Doria appeared to be on a path toward landfill near Charleston, South Carolina, which is vulnerably located on a peninsula. A flood chart posted by the National Weather Service projected a combined high tide and storm surge around Charleston Harbor of 10.3 feet; the record is12.5 feet, set by Hurricane Hugo in 1989

Some 830,000 people were under mandatory evacuation orders on the South Carolina coast, and the Associated Press is reporting more than 400 people were in state-operated shelters.

Beyond Charleston, a curfew was being put in place for Beaufort County, South Carolina, from 10 p.m. tonight until  6 a.m. Thursday according to the Beaufort County Sheriff’s Office Facebook page. The curfew includes the city of Beaufort and the towns of Bluffton and Port Royal.

7:37 pm ET Wednesday

Duane Sands, the Health Minister of the Bahamas, says the death toll in the islands from the destruction of Hurricane Dorian has now risen to 20 and the Associated Press reported that more fatalities are expected.

7:24 pm ET Wednesday

Hurricane Dorian is expected to travel up the East Coast this week, bringing dangerous storm surges, flooding, gusting winds and potentially even tornadoes – along a new path that could result in billions of dollars’ worth of additional damage.

“Hurricane Dorian’s change in direction has shifted the risk spotlight toward a broader residential real estate path, encompassing $1.7 trillion this week, up from a projected $1.5 trillion when it was expected to make landfall along the Florida coast,” George Ratiu, a senior economist for realtor.com, said in a statement to HousingWire. “While the storm intensity has been downgraded, it remains a serious threat.”

Realtor.com estimates 6.6 million households could be impacted. The economic effects could also be extensive, with the potential to disrupt not only home sales and construction but industries such as local tourism.

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Dorian is currently a Category 2 storm and has brought coastal flooding along eastern Florida. According to The Weather Channel, Dorian is on a similar track to 2016’s Hurricane Matthew, which wrought about $10 billion in damages.

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FOX Business' Brittany De Lea and Matt McNulty contributed updates.