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Shifting West: Matthew May Not Miss Florida


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Key Takeaways

  1. Severe impacts to Haiti, eastern Cuba and Bahamas expected now through Wednesday.
  2. Recent shift in models bring forecast center closer to Florida, but still just offshore.
  3. "Direct hurricane impacts" possible in Florida Thursday and Friday, according to the NHC.


[ebs_notification type="alert-warning" close="true" ]FACEBOOK LIVE UPDATE AT 10:15 PM EST[/ebs_notification]


The flip-flopping continues. The question is, will the shift noted today in nearly all reliable forecast models stick?  The National Hurricane Center moved their forecast track of Major Hurricane Matthew considerably, as of their 5 pm advisory Monday afternoon.


You can watch the Florida Storms Facebook Live video from earlier today for an explanation on the shift in the models that occurred midday.


Slow-moving, intense hurricanes are notorious for erratic storm paths.  Matthew has more recently been steered northward around the western periphery of a high pressure system to its northeast.  This same weather system is forecast to grow stronger and expand to the west, forcing Matthew to slow down and make another turn by Wednesday. This turn puts it on a trajectory very close to Florida by Thursday.  This was explained in a 30-second video tweet Sunday.


A considerable amount of uncertainty still surrounds the eventual fate of Matthew, including how it will traverse the islands of Cuba and The Bahamas, how far northwest it will track before making yet another turn to the northeast, and how geographically large the system will become.  All of these changeable traits will factor into how significant the impacts will be to the Atlantic coast of Florida and points just inland as Matthew passes by.

It may not be until late Tuesday before specifics on rain, wind, and possibly surge may occur as a result of Matthew. Regardless of how close the storm gets to the coast, there will be high surf, beach erosion, a deadly risk of rip currents, and minor coastal flooding in the hours leading up to Matthew’s approach.  The storm is forecast to pull away from the state by Saturday.



Sources include nearest National Weather Service office, National Hurricane Center, and the Florida Public Radio Emergency Network (@FloridaStorms).
Sources include nearby emergency management agencies, FEMA, and your local NPR affiliate. 
Sources include the Florida Department of Transportation, Florida Highway Patrol and other nearby traffic information.

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