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Dorian Smacks Carolinas

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Image from https://www.nhc.noaa.gov/

Although weakening to a Category 1 hurricane, Dorian pounded the coast of North and South Carolina with sustained devastating 90-mph winds and flooding coastal towns on Friday morning, September 6.

At 5:53 a.m. on Friday, the storm was 30 miles south-southwest of Cape Lookout, North Carolina, savaging the outer banks.

Staff at the National Hurricane Center issued an advisory at 2 a.m. east coast time forecasting that the storm will push farther out to sea before crashing into land later on Friday.

Dorian has been pummeling the Carolinas since Thursday leaving flooded coastal towns and dozens of tornadoes in its wake.

Floodwaters rose to a foot or more in sections of Charleston caused by more than 7-inches of rain that fell in some areas. Another half-inch of rain is expected Friday night.

More than 280,000 homes and businesses were without power in the Carolinas on Friday morning. Power has been restored to thousands of residents of Georgia.

The storm has been picking up speed, but still is crawling forward toward Virginia where storm surges and high winds are predicted.

Governors of North and South Carolina and Virginia have declared states of emergency. Schools have been shutdown, shelters opened, and National Guard troops prepare for what is to come.

On Thursday night, September 5, the storm passed southeast of Myrtle Beach, South Carolina thrashing the coastline with high winds, storm surge and torrential rain.

A tornado watch is in effect for Eastern North Carolina and sections of Virginia.

Dorian may make landfall between Wilmington and the Outer Banks in North Carolina.

There are reports that by Friday afternoon it will move out to sea. However, tropical storm conditions are possible for Cape Cod, Massachusetts by Saturday morning.

Dorian slammed into the Bahamas as a Category 5 hurricane on Sunday afternoon, September 1. It is reported to be the strongest Atlantic hurricane landfall on record.

The number of deaths in the Bahamas was reported at 30 on Thursday. Dr. Duane Sands, the nation’s Health Minister warned that the final death toll will be “staggering.”

Thousands Without Power

As of 11 a.m. Friday east coast time, 227,816 residents of North Carolina, 135,651 citizens of South Carolina, and 50,705 occupants of Virginia were without power.

On Thursday, more than 270,000 homes and businesses were without power across South Carolina. Dorian began knocking out power in the early morning on Thursday. The damage to the coastal electric grid rose as the eye of the storm got nearer to land and wind gusts were reaching more than 50-mph.

South Carolina Governor Henry McMaster reported that the entire city of Georgetown was without power.

Hundreds of utility crews and contractors were hampered by the storm as they worked to restore power to rural communities and parts of Charleston. High winds made it impossible for the crews to use bucket trucks as they tried to make repairs.

Dominion Energy, which took control of South Carolina Electric & Gas earlier this year, had to handle the most outages. On Thursday afternoon, company officials announced that more than 165,000 customers were without power.

In Charleston County, more than 108,000 customers were without power at one point. There were more than 30,000 customers without power in Dorchester County and more than 8,000 in Berkeley County.

More than 80,000 electric cooperative customers were hunkered down in their homes without electricity. Berkeley Electric Cooperative alone suffered more than 59,000 blackouts at one point.

Santee Cooper, an electric utility serving Berkeley, Georgetown and Horry counties, reported more than 25,000 of their customers were in the dark late Thursday. Duke Energy said it had more than 1,200 outages.

The utilities and their contractors plan to work around the clock to return power to residents of South Carolina. However, they acknowledged that it would take time because of the slow pace of the storm making work difficult.

It’s evident that hurricanes are stronger than in past years due partially to climate change. As hurricane seasons come and go, climate change will continue to influence their intensity.

Residents of areas of the United States that are susceptible to these storms are probably looking for ways to protect themselves and their homes.

standalone generator has become an essential item for residents of these areas.

APElectric offers a wide range of stand-alone generators from such manufacturers as Cummins, Westinghouse, Kohler, Briggs & Stratton, Generac, and Guardian They have a large inventory to choose from. Many models feature Wi-Fi so that you can monitor and control the generator from anywhere on Earth. The website also includes a generator sizing calculator and offers information on how to select the proper generator for your situation. 

As storms get stronger, it’s best to be prepared. Visit the APElectric website and browse their supply of generators. Purchasing one can give you peace of mind during these crazy storm seasons.