Hurricane Irma is an extremely dangerous storm, currently imperiling Puerto Rico and the Virgin Islands with 185 mph winds. However, what are the chances that the massive storm will strike South Carolina and cities like Charleston, Savannah and Myrtle Beach?
Currently, the storm’s path shows it will likely strike southern Florida and the Florida Keys; what it will do after turning northward is not yet clear. The Post Courier reported on September 5, “The storm could possibly cross Florida, reemerge in the Atlantic and head up toward a landfall in the Carolinas. A direct track to South Carolina could not yet be ruled out.”
The September 5 4 p.m. hazardous weather outlook for Charleston from the National Weather Service says:
“Tropical Weather: There is an increasing risk for impacts associated with Hurricane Irma over the weekend into early next week. It is still too early to pin down exactly how Irma will impact the region as there remains uncertainty with the track the hurricane will take and how strong it will be as it approaches the Southeast United States. Everyone across Southeast South Carolina and Southeast Georgia, especially those in hurricane prone areas, should have hurricane plan in place and continue to monitor the latest forecasts from the National Hurricane Center.”
Savannah’s weather is charted through the Charleston office. You can read the weather forecast for Myrtle Beach here.
See updated radar for Charleston here. See the hourly forecast here. See infrared satellite maps here.
On September 4, The State also reported: “a significant number of models show Irma will impact South Carolina directly.” According to The State, “If Irma impacts South Carolina, Smith said the models show it could begin anywhere from Sunday to the following Wednesday.” However, it remains an if, and Florida appears to be in more immediate peril.
The National Weather Service says the risks of impact to South Carolina (and Georgia) from Hurricane Irma are growing but remain unknown.
The Post and Courier quoted meteorologist Jeff Masters, of Weather Underground, as saying it’s also not certain “whether Irma will travel along Florida’s west cost or its east coast, offshore from one or the other, or along the spine of the Florida peninsula.”
Different forecasting models show the storm tracking different courses. One model shows “a wide spread of rainfall across the Carolinas with anywhere from less than an inch of rain to four plus inches of rain by Tuesday,” reports ABC11. Models show southern Florida most in peril, not South Carolina, but, again, the storm is unpredictable and not expected to hit Florida until Friday.
According to The National Weather Service, “#Irma is the strongest #hurricane in the Atlantic basin outside of the Caribbean Sea & Gulf of Mexico in NHC records.”
The Post and Courier has put together a local hurricane guide for South Carolina.
There are currently no hurricane warnings for South Carolina.
Here’s an extended forecast for Charleston from the National Weather Service:
“This Afternoon (September 5)
A slight chance of showers and thunderstorms after 5pm. Mostly sunny, with a high near 85. South wind around 16 mph. Chance of precipitation is 20%.
A chance of showers and thunderstorms, mainly after 3am. Partly cloudy, with a low around 77. South wind 10 to 14 mph. Chance of precipitation is 30%.
Showers and thunderstorms likely, mainly after 2pm. Mostly cloudy, with a high near 85. Southwest wind 8 to 13 mph. Chance of precipitation is 60%. New rainfall amounts of less than a tenth of an inch, except higher amounts possible in thunderstorms.
Showers and thunderstorms likely, mainly before 10pm. Mostly cloudy, with a low around 68. Southwest wind 8 to 10 mph becoming northwest after midnight. Chance of precipitation is 60%. New rainfall amounts between a tenth and quarter of an inch, except higher amounts possible in thunderstorms.
Mostly sunny, with a high near 81. North wind 7 to 9 mph.
Mostly clear, with a low around 66.
Sunny, with a high near 82.
Mostly clear, with a low around 66.
Mostly sunny, with a high near 81.
A chance of showers. Mostly cloudy, with a low around 68. Chance of precipitation is 30%.
A chance of showers. Cloudy, with a high near 79. Chance of precipitation is 30%.
A chance of showers. Cloudy, with a low around 71. Breezy. Chance of precipitation is 40%.
A chance of showers. Cloudy, with a high near 80. Breezy. Chance of precipitation is 50%.
A chance of showers. Cloudy, with a low around 71. Windy. Chance of precipitation is 50%.
A chance of showers. Mostly cloudy, with a high near 80. Breezy.”