Just got the below update -
There is a lot of uncertainty about how strong the system will get and what the actual track will be. It may get named Ophelia and it may not get named. Even if it does not get named, wind gusts potentially to 70 mph are possible.
Widespread soundside flooding is a concern with this system. The winds initially will be northeast creating flooding concerns for mainland Dare and oceanfront—certainly expect overwash on Highway 12 around Pea Island & Rodanthe. Then winds are expected to reverse quickly. How this actually plays out will be track dependent, but the track being forecast at this time, is not good news for soundside. The expectation currently is that the reversal will be westerly or southwesterly. This will rapidly push back the sound water that is going to get blown out by the early easterly winds. The expected timing for the wind reversal is overnight Friday night into Saturday morning. When the winds reverse, we could get a slosh effect where the sound rises quickly, settles back some, and sloshes around before returning to normal levels. If this develops as projected, 2 – 4 feet of soundside flooding is possible. It would include Colington, where portions of Colington road would possibly be underwater and lower lots would likely flood; Kitty Hawk, especially soundfront and the lower areas around the canals; Manteo, especially the waterfront area; Pirates Cove possibly; Nags Head soundfront; Hatteras Island from Oregon Inlet south; and Ocracoke. The flooding would likely only last a few hours, but that doesn’t lessen the risk. If you live in any of these areas, you probably need to protect your property against surge as best you can, get things inside if possible, and get your vehicles to higher ground.
There is also potential for up to 6 inches of rain, although most areas will get 2 – 4.
Some wind damage is possible, and some limited power outages are possible, but the concern is the surge, especially on the sound. These concerns are real regardless of whether this system gets named. Don’t let your guard down if it doesn’t get named. The winds will be strong enough and directionally such that they will cause surge problems if the storm tracks as expected at this time.
Remember the threat on the sound, for areas other than east facing areas like Mainland Dare isn’t until the winds reverse Saturday morning. So don’t let down your expectation after Friday passes with no flooding in those areas.