Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis has ordered tolls be suspended on major highways ...

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1 hr ago Highway tolls suspended across Florida ahead of Dorian

Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis has ordered tolls be suspended on major highways ahead of Hurricane Dorian.

The governor asked residents Sunday afternoon to “heed evacuation orders” from local officials and said several highways will suspend tolls, including: 

The Florida Turnpike Alligator Alley Sawgrass Expressway SR 528 Beachline Expressway SR 417 SR 429

Palm Beach, Martin, St Lucie, Brevard, Indian River, Volusia and St John counties all have issued evacuation orders, DeSantis said. He anticipates Flagler, Duval and Nassau counties to issue evacuation orders soon. 

 No bridge closures are announced at this time, DeSantis added.

“We have to prepare that this could have major impacts on the state of Florida,” DeSantis said.

1 hr 13 min ago Here's the latest update on Dorian from the National Hurricane Center

Hurricane Dorian is passing over the Abacos Islands and "heading with all its fury" toward Grand Bahama, the northernmost island of the Bahamas in the Atlantic, according to the 2 p.m. ET advisory from National Hurricane Center.

The storm has sustained winds of 185 mph, the weather service said.

There have been no updates to watches and warnings.

1 hr 15 min ago How Florida is preparing for power outages

About 16,000 employees of Florida Power & Light are preparing for outages due to Hurricane Dorian, according to the company's president and CEO Eric Silagy.

"[These people are] either pre-stage or rolling to stage sites across Florida. As soon as we're able, when winds get below 35 mph, we will deploy into the field to get the lights back on," Silagy said during a press conference today.

He added:

"With a storm this size, even if it doesn't make landfall, we're going to see tropical storm force winds, potentially hurricane force winds and storm surge, and there will be power outages," Silagy added. 

1 hr 21 min ago Only one hurricane in modern records has had winds stronger than Dorian's

Since 1950, only one storm has had stronger winds in the Atlantic than Dorian has right now.

Hurricane Allen in 1980 had maximum winds of 190 mph. 

Here's a look at the strongest storms the Atlantic has seen:

Allen (1980): Maximum winds of 190 mph Dorian (2019): Current winds of 185 mph Gilbert (1988): Maximum winds of 185 mph Wilma (2005): Maximum winds of 185 mph
1 hr 49 min ago Dorian just hit the Bahamas. Here's where it's going next.

From CNN's Judson Jones and Brandon Miller

Hurricane Dorian made landfall moments ago on the Abaco Islands in the Bahamas. The storm is a dangerous Category 5 and is continuing to churn northwestward.

The storm has sustained winds of 185 mph. Gusts over 200 mph are being experienced there while storm surge up to and over 20 feet is likely occurring. Extreme rainfall rates will likely lead to flash flooding.

Here's what else to expect each day this week:

Monday morning

Tropical storm-force winds will begin to move into the Florida Peninsula on Monday morning, likely occurring first in the West Palm Beach/Port St. Lucie area.

Outer-Bands from the storm will move through starting Monday morning, but there will also likely be times of sun in between the clouds and showers On Monday morning at 8am, the center of Dorian should be just under 100 miles east of West Palm Beach The hurricane is expected to still be Category 5 on Monday morning

Monday evening

Dorian is slowly moving northwest and spreading tropical storm-force winds over more of Florida. By 8 p.m. ET Monday, tropical-storm force winds will be pushing into Central Florida.

The center of Dorian will be around 60 miles from Florida coast between West Palm Beach and Port St Lucie Some Hurricane-force wind gusts could be possible beginning Monday evening Rain is becoming more frequent and heavier in the outer bands, but there will still be dry periods

Tuesday

By Tuesday, Hurricane Dorian should have weakened to a Category 4, with winds around 140 mph near the center. Tuesday will see Dorian start to make its closest pass to Florida as it turns to the north and parallels the coastline. Again, though the official forecast calls for the center of the storm to stay around 40-50 miles off shore, any slight deviation could bring the eye into Florida. Even if it doesn’t, hurricane force winds are likely to be over land on Tuesday along Florida’s east coast. Rain should be steady but might not be constant, depending on how close the storm gets.

At 8 a.m., the center of Dorian should be within about 50 miles of Port St Lucie/Vero Beach area. It will move northward during the day and evening. 

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Wednesday

The storm will continue to produce hurricane-force winds as it heads north with some more weakening forecast. There is an increasing risk of strong winds and dangerous storm surge along the coasts of Georgia, South Carolina and North Carolina.

Thursday

This will be the closest approach to the Carolina coast. There is also the possibility of a landfall.

Friday

The storm will near the outer banks of North Carolina.

1 hr 58 min ago British Royal Navy sends ship to the Bahamas help during Dorian

From CNN's Duarte Mendonca

The British Royal Navy auxiliary aid ship, RFA Mounts Bay, has been deployed to offer support during Hurricane Dorian, according to the Ministry of Defense press office.

The ship is ready to assist if help is needed in the Bahamas. It is fully equipped, capable of carrying amphibious vehicle and includes a helicopter for rescue and surveying operations, a statement from the department said.

The Royal Navy deploys ships every year ahead of hurricane season across different overseas territories — including the commonwealth areas — as part of their standard protocol to provide humanitarian and disaster relief.

The ship’s current position is not known, but its last whereabouts were near the British Virgin Islands roughly two days ago, the department said.

 

2 hr 9 min ago St. Lucie county orders evacuations: "Our concern has grown, and so should yours"

Mandatory evacuations have been ordered for North and South Hutchinson Island, St Lucie County Sheriff Ken Mascara said at an afternoon news briefing.

Manufactured homes and low-laying areas are also under a mandatory evacuation. Effective tomorrow, access to the area will be limited to residents and businesses only, Mascara said. 

“This storm is very unpredictable,” said Mascara, who advised residents to get to shelters. “Our concern has grown, and so should yours."

Authorities warn against anyone who tries to take advantage of homes or businesses that are vulnerable. Last night someone attempted to “burglarize a house that was vacated,” Mascara said.

“We are watching for this kind of activity,” Mascara added.

2 hr 23 min ago Dorian makes landfall in the Bahamas

Hurricane Dorian made landfall on Elbow Cay in the Bahamas' Abacos Islands at 12:40 p.m. ET, according to the National Hurricane Center.

The storm is a Category 5 hurricane with 185 mph winds.

"This is a life-threatening situation. Residents there should take immediate shelter. Do not venture into the eye if it passes over your location," the center said in an advisory.

2 hr 37 min ago You could walk as fast as Dorian is moving

From CNN's Brandon Miller

NOAA NOAA

Dorian, which is crawling over the Northern Bahamas, is forecast to travel about 120 miles in the 36 hours between Sunday and Tuesday.

That means the hurricane is

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