Models have shifted a little more to the east once again. It’s still looking likely that North Carolina will be impacted, how much is anyone’s guess. I would suggest all on the East Coast keep an eye on Hurricane Irene as she could take a left turn at any time.
Looking at the official projected path of Irene from the National Hurricane Center anywhere from Wilmington North Carolina, Morehead City up through the Outer Banks may receive a direct hit. Hurricane force winds will be felt farther inland.
Irene Forecast track as of 2pmedt Aug 23 2011
Depending on the exact track Hurricane Irene takes, areas farther to the north are not out of the woods. If Irene is an east coast runner where the eye would remain over water, many areas would be impacted. Impacts would be lessened only due to the west side of the hurricane impacting these areas. Still, the damage form high winds and flooding will be great. Should Hurricane Irene move up the coast and impact highly populated areas and major cities like Washington D.C., Philadelphia or New York City, it will be devastating to the infrastructure of these cities.
The other side of the coin, Irene may not make landfall on the U.S. East Coast at all. With the High still firmly in place west of Texas and a deepening Trough from the North East in the East and shortwaves moving down, Irene may have a problem overcoming this. Of course no one can tell for sure if this will happen so everybody will need to stay vigilant.
Here is Irene’s position as of 2 PM EDT
NWS NATIONAL HURRICANE CENTER MIAMI FL AL092011
200 PM EDT TUE AUG 23 2011
...HURRICANE CONDITIONS EXPECTED TO REACH THE TURKS AND CAICOS
ISLANDS VERY SOON...
SUMMARY OF 200 PM EDT...1800 UTC...INFORMATION
ABOUT 55 MI...90 KM S OF GRAND TURK ISLAND
ABOUT 70 MI...115 KM NNW OF PUERTO PLATA DOMINICAN REPUBLIC
MAXIMUM SUSTAINED WINDS...100 MPH...160 KM/H
PRESENT MOVEMENT...WNW OR 295 DEGREES AT 10 MPH...17 KM/H
MINIMUM CENTRAL PRESSURE...977 MB...28.85 INCHES
Here’s a look at computer model forecast plots-
Irene Forecast track as of 351pmedt Aug 23 2011
Irene Forecast track as of 2pmedt Aug 23 2011_01
Side note: Did you hear about the 5.8 Earthquake on the East Coast today in Virginia ?