Hurricane Dorian weakened slightly Thursday night and Friday morning, with maximum sustained winds of 90 mph. The eye of the widening storm made a brief landfall over Cape Hatteras, North Carolina, at 8:35 a.m Friday.
Coastal flooding from a combination of storm surge and torrential rainfall flooded roads along the coast from Georgia to North Carolina.
The death toll climbed to at least 30 in the Bahamas since Sunday, when Dorian’s fierce Category 5 winds reached 185 mph, with gusts exceeding 220 mph. The hurricane was nearly stationary at that time, spending 41 hours over portions of the northern Bahama Islands.
Strong winds gusting as high as 60 to 80 mph brought down trees and power lines from coastal Florida to the Carolinas, leaving about 400,000 customers without power during the height of the storm. Five deaths were reported in the U.S. — in Florida and North Carolina.
More than 20 tornadoes were reported near the coast Thursday, with funnels touching down at North Myrtle Beach, South Carolina, and Wilmington, North Carolina, causing minor damage. No injuries were reported.
A waterspout that came ashore touched down on a barrier island at Emerald Isle, North Carolina, about 9 a.m. Thursday, damaging dozens of homes and overturning campers, leaving twisted siding and torn roofs strewn in all directions.
Tornadoes spawned by hurricanes and tropical storms are usually associated with outer rainbands that interact with terrain. The resulting friction in the low levels causes the winds to turn with height, in addition to the ambient rotation of the storm’s circulation.