EASTON — The National Hurricane Center issued Wednesday, Sept. 4, a tropical storm watch for Dorchester County and a tropical storm warning for the lower Chesapeake Bay with Hurricane Dorian continuing its northern trek just off the Atlantic coast.
With the storm predicted to go up the Atlantic coast, forecasters predict thunderstorms Thursday and periods of rain and wind on Friday for the Mid-Shore. The Mid-Shore could see 1 to 2 inches of rain. Forecasters also warn residents of the chance of tidal flooding along the Chesapeake Bay and its tributaries.
Worcester, Wicomico and Somerset counties join Dorchester in the tropical storm watch area, with the southern tip of Worcester also in the tropical storm warning area.
“Hurricane Dorian is still slowly moving up the coast near Florida and the Carolinas,” Talbot Emergency Management Coordinator Geneva Harrison said. “It is worth updating on this evening’s forecast as we have the potential to see effects of wind and higher tides as we get closer to Friday and Saturday.
“It looks like most of the effects will stay to the south and east, but forecasts are showing the potential for windy conditions farther up the Chesapeake Bay into our area on Friday and higher tides Friday into Saturday,” she said. “We will know much more in the next 24 hours as Dorian picks up speed as it heads north, and hopefully more east.”
On Wednesday evening, Sept. 4, Hurricane Dorian maintained a category 3 status with maximum sustained winds at 115 mile per hour. The eye was located about 100 miles off the Georgia coast.
Forecasters predict the storm to move northeast and parallel along the South Carolina coast with the eye remaining offshore. The Wednesday evening NHC model shows the storm making landfall either late Thursday night in southern North Carolina or along southern edge of the Outer Banks Friday morning.
Mid-Shore emergency agencies warn residents of tidal flooding associated with any coastal storm.
The Maryland Emergency Management Agency published a map for state flood zones at www.knowyourzonemd.com.
The zones are A, B, C and X. An A-rated zone is consider a high-risk area with a 1 percent chance of flooding annually and a 26 percent chance over a 30-year period, according to the Federal Emergency Management Agency.
Zones B and C are considered low risk and have a less than 1 percent chances of flooding. Zone X is the area not in a flood zone.
Zone A includes directly along the Choptank River from Caroline County to the north, all the way to west of Cambridge. Locations from downtown Cambridge, excluding the waterfront, to Linkwood along U.S. Route 50 are not in a flood zone. Just south of Cambridge and east of Maple Dam Road is in Zone C.
The Neck District, Taylors Island, Blackwater National Wildlife Refuge, south Vienna and Hoopers Island are in Zone A. Vienna is in Zone B.
In Talbot County, Oxford and west of the Tred Avon River is in Zone A. Between the Easton Bypass and the Tred Avon and Miles Rivers is in Zone C.
In Queen Anne’s County, all of Kent Island is in Zone A with the western part of Grasonville also in Zone A. Other parts of Grasonville is in Zone B before going to Zone C near Queenstown and Wye Mills.
Rock Hall and Eastern Neck Wildlife Refuge in Kent County are in Zone A. East of Rock Hall to Chestertown is in Zone B. All areas along the Chester River are in Zone B.