Hurricane Dorian strengthens as storm tracks toward North Carolina coast

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Hurricane Dorian has strengthened a little as it tracks up the Southeast seaboard off Georgia.

RELATED: How does Hurricane Dorian compare to Florence and Matthew

The National Hurricane Center’s 5 p.m. update showed the hurricane is located about 150 miles south of Charleston, South Carolina. Maximum sustained winds are being clocked at 110 mph. The storm is moving 8 mph.

STAY UP-TO-DATE on Hurricane Dorian coverage: Download the ABC11 app here.

Gov. Roy Cooper said in a news conference Wednesday that an 85-year-old Columbus County man was the first storm-related death in North Carolina. Cooper said the man fell from a ladder as he was preparing his home for the storm.

WEATHER ALERTS

A Tropical Storm Warning is in effect for Wake County. It also includes Harnett, Franklin, Johnston and extends south to Bladen and east to Lenoir and Pitt counties. Counties east of the Tropical Storm Warning are under a Hurricane Warning.

The difference in the warnings are the speed of sustained wind the included areas are expected to see. Click here for the full list of weather advisories.

The storm continues to pick up speed.

That’s a good thing for North Carolina. It means the storm will be moving quickly by the time it gets to our shore.

RELATED: Schools announce closings as Hurricane Dorian nears North Carolina

TIMING

Dorian’s eye is expected to push north, parallel with the Georgia coast by Thursday morning. Throughout the day Thursday, the storm will move off the coast of South Carolina.

All day Thursday, areas in Georgia, South Carolina and North Carolina will receive rain and wind from the storm.

By Friday morning, the eye of Dorian will likely be near Wilmington, North Carolina, and the storm will have weakened to Category 1 classification.

Dorian really picks up speed Friday, pushing through the North Carolina coast. It is expected to be well off to sea by Saturday morning.
Depending on the ultimate path of the storm, people in North Carolina could see between 1-10 inches of rain.

POWER OUTAGES

Power outages are likely from Hurricane Dorian–although the extent of the outages are not yet known. Still, utility crews from Oklahoma are on their way to Raleigh to help.

The crews said they received help last week when they were struggling with outages, so they wanted to repay the good deed.

Cooper said Tuesday there will be a mandatory evacuation of all vulnerable coastal areas and two large shelters will be organized in the Triangle to help those displaced by Hurricane Dorian.

WATCH: Residents in Wrightsville Beach prepare for Hurricane Dorian

NHC said the risk of life-threatening storm surge and hurricane-force wind continues to increase along the coast of North Carolina.

MORE: Here’s what you actually need to prepare for Hurricane Dorian
MORE: North Carolina animal shelters taking in pets, livestock ahead of storm

Even weakened, the storm could bring heavy rain and strong wind to coastal regions all along the East Coast of the United States.

Coastal flooding and beach erosion is likely in North Carolina. The state could see between an inch and six inches of rain, depending on the ultimate track of the storm.

PREPARE FOR THE STORM
What to know about generators before a power outage
What happens to your home in hurricane-force winds?
Foods to stock up on before a storm hits

Copyright © 2019 ABC11-WTVD-TV/DT. All Rights Reserved – The Associated Press contributed to this report.