NOAA Upgrades Storm off US Southeast Coast to Tropical Storm Ophelia

TS Ophelia Satellite Image

2pm EDT Update:

The NHC has reclassified the developing coastal storm as “Tropical Storm Ophelia”.

Data from the Air Force Reserve Hurricane Hunters and satellite wind data indicate that maximum sustained winds have increased to near 50 knots (60 mph) with some slight strengthening still  possible before landfall along the coast of North Carolina early Saturday morning.  Significant wave heights currently 6-8 meters (20-26 feet).

Current satellite image suggests that Ophelia looks more like a subtropical system than a tropical system with most to the wind and clouds northwest and north of the center. 


The combination of a dangerous storm surge and the tide will cause normally dry areas near the coast to be flooded by rising waters moving inland from the shoreline.  The water could reach the following heights above ground somewhere in the indicated

Areas if the peak surge occurs at the time of high tide:
Neuse and Bay Rivers…3-5 ft
Pamlico and Pungo Rivers…3-5 ft
Chesapeake Bay south of Colonial Beach…2-4 ft
Surf City, NC to Chincoteague, VA…2-4 ft
Albemarle Sound…2-4 ft
South Santee River, SC to Surf City, NC…1-3 ft
Chincoteague, VA to Manasquan Inlet, NJ…1-3 ft
Upper Chesapeake Bay…1-3 ft
Delaware Bay…1-3 ft

NHC Forecast Track

Latest Advisory from NHC

Ocean Weather Services

About Fred Pickhardt

I am a marine meteorologist and sailed briefly with American Export Lines in the Far East trade after graduating from State University of New York Maritime College. I have extensive experience in weather analysis, weather forecasting, optimum ship routing, vessel performance evaluations and forensic weather event reconstructions. I founded Ocean Weather Services and as Owner and Chief Consultant currently provide optimum ship routing services and forensic marine weather reports to the maritime industry.
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