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Hurricane Dorian is about to hit Durham. Here’s what to expect

Hurricane Florence hit Duke last weekend, causing some students to hole up in their dorms and wait the storm out.
Hurricane Florence hit Duke last weekend, causing some students to hole up in their dorms and wait the storm out.

Hurricane Dorian is crawling toward North Carolina’s coast, with the worst of its effects coming for the central part of the state between 2 p.m. Thursday and 6 a.m. Friday, according to Duke officials. 

Durham can expect 1 to 1.5 inches of rain from the now-Category 3 hurricane, with wind gusts of up to 38 mph, Vice President for Administration Kyle Cavanaugh wrote in an email to university management. The rainfall could cause flooding in areas with bad drainage and in low-lying and urban areas, he wrote. 

Winds could send light outside objects careening and take out tree branches, resulting in potential isolated power outages, Cavanaugh added. He advised that items left outside should be “secured or moved indoors as a precaution.” 

Duke is ready: they have cleared drains and have people on call to remove trees, according to Cavanaugh.

Duke still will likely not enact its severe weather and emergency conditions policy, which could result in cancelled classes, Cavanaugh wrote, but he noted that the University is continuing to monitor the storm’s path. Durham Public Schools closed their doors Thursday, the district said in a tweet Wednesday. 

Duke said it would evacuate students from its Marine Lab in Beaufort on Wednesday morning and would cancel classes there through Friday. 

The National Hurricane Center expects 6 to 12 inches of rain in the coastal Carolinas, with up to 15 inches of rain in some areas. 

Dangerous storm surges on the coast of North Carolina are expected, the Center wrote in an 11 a.m. update Thursday. The storm was about 140 miles south/southwest of Wilmington with maximum sustained winds of 110 mph, the Center said in another update as of 11 a.m. Thursday. 

Dorian ravaged the Bahamas earlier in the week as a Category 5 storm before traveling slowly up the Atlantic coast. The hurricane has killed at least 23 people, the New York Times reported.

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