Hurricane Isaias is creeping towards Florida on Saturday and is expected to make landfall sometime late on Saturday night or early on Sunday morning. The latest models from the National Hurricane Service show the storm making contact with the eastern side of the peninsula at 8 a.m. ET on Sunday. However, it is still difficult to say when severe weather conditions will start and stop.
Isaias reached official hurricane status early on Saturday morning, after devastating the Dominican Republic and Puerto Rico. The storm is moving northwest towards Florida at about 12 miles per hour, with sustained wind speeds of about 85 miles per hour. The official Hurricane Warning is in effect beginning at 11 a.m. ET in parts of Florida, although the most severe conditions there will likely start late on Saturday night. Current models show the storm sweeping up the entirety of the east coast.
The latest graphics from the National Hurricane Center trace Isaias' movement along the eastern coast of Florida throughout the day on Sunday. It will make it to the northern corner of the state around 8 a.m. ET on Monday morning, judging by the current projections, and continue up the southern states. At around 8 a.m. ET on Tuesday, it will pass by the coast of North Carolina, at which point it will slow down and decrease in severity.
Still, Experts expect Isaias to continue along the east coast, bringing severe winds to the nation's capital, then to the mid-Atlantic and New England coasts. It will even collide directly with Nova Scotia if meteorologists are correct.
Isaias is expected to bring about six inches of rain to Florida, after dropping eight inches of rain on the Bahamas during the day on Saturday. The islands of the Caribbean have already been badly damaged by the storm — particularly the Dominican Republic and Puerto Rico on Thursday and Friday. According to The Weather Channel, the Dominican Republic already has two confirmed deaths from the storm — a middle-aged man who was killed by a fallen power line, and a 5-year-old boy who was killed when a tree crushed his house.
It is estimated that hundreds of thousands of people in the two islands are currently stuck without drinking water or electricity. The National Guard has been deployed to assist with the relief efforts, but the storm has complicated those operations. In the meantime, communities in Florid and beyond are preparing.