Landfall anticipated early Tuesday on states east coast with maximum sustained winds of 140mph
Residents of Florida braced for what could be a historically damaging storm on Friday as Hurricane Dorian lingered in the western Atlantic, building strength in advance of its anticipated landfall early on Tuesday on the states east coast.
The storm strengthened into an extremely dangerous category 4hurricane on Friday evening, amid fears it could prove to be the most powerful hurricane to hit Floridas east coast in nearly 30 years. Forecasters warned that Dorian could wallop the state with extremely dangerous 140mph (225 kph) winds.
It could be an absolute monster, Donald Trump said in a video address, pledging federal support for local disaster relief efforts.
Floridas governor, Ron DeSantis, declared a state of emergency for every county in the state and warned of a potential multi-day event, but stopped short of declaring any emergency evacuations.
Emergency preparations were under way up and down the Atlantic coast, from Jacksonville in the north to Miami and the Florida Keys, as well as in Orlando and inland areas.
Ominously, on Friday morning the storm had developed a distinct eye and slowed its westward progress, meaning it could spend more time over land and do more damage.
Meteorologists said Dorian could make landfall in Florida on Tuesday as a category 4 hurricane.
If it makes landfall as a category 3 or 4 hurricane, thats a big deal, the University of Miami hurricane researcher Brian McNoldy told the Associated Press. A lot of people are going to be affected. A lot of insurance claims.