Hurricane Jose expected to miss Delaware

This image of Hurricane Jose was taken at 1:45 p.m. Monday when Jose was centered about 265 miles east-southeast of Cape Hatteras, North Carolina. (NASA/NOAA GOES Project)

DOVER — “At this point, the storm is projected to pass about 200 miles to the east of the Delaware coast,” said National Weather Service meteorologist Lance Franck on Monday.

“That said, it’s important not to focus on the center of the storm because we are expecting impacts to extend well away from that.”

The weather service has a gamut of advisories in place this week addressing the potential impact of Hurricane Jose as it travels north along the East Coast.

As of Monday, the category one “minor hurricane” was trundling past the North Carolinia coast at about 9 miles per hour — still about 400 miles southeast of Cape Henlopen.

Both Kent and Sussex counties are under standing hazardous weather outlooks and coastal flood advisories until mid-week. The coast in Sussex County is under an additional high surf advisory and a tropical storm watch.

The potential for the largest impact will likely come later this evening, said Mr. Franck.

“The primary concern for flooding and beach erosion is right along the coast,” he said. “In particular, tonight’s high tide cycle may be more problematic and can cause some moderate flooding. It’s not only due to Hurricane Jose, but the new moon as well. The astronomical tides are already high this week.”

Although forecasters aren’t expecting especially treacherous conditions, it certainly wouldn’t be a good week for a swim in the ocean.

“We’re seeing some high surf on the coast so there are going to be some dangerous and life threatening rip currents. We’re advising against swimming,” said Mr. Franck.

Out at sea Hurricane Jose is producing winds up to 75 miles per hour, but the state is likely to see gusts of only 35-40 miles per hour, noted the weather service.

The tropical storm force winds are expected to arrive this morning, followed by rain and the potential for minor to moderate flooding. The strongest winds are likely to stay confined to the coastal areas.

The weather service advises taking simple precautions such as not leaving a vehicle in a flood prone area, not driving through high flood waters, stocking an emergency supply kit, checking both one’s home and business emergency plan, secure outdoor belongings that may be susceptible to high winds, alert visitors to conditions, limit unnecessary travel and continue to monitor weather reports.

“At this point, the forecast is for little change in storm strength over the next two days,” said Mr. Franck.

Although warnings will remain in effect until later in the week, the weather service predicts that Hurricane Jose will continue its current path and pass off the coasts of Delaware and New Jersey. It’s then expected to curve northeast and weaken into a tropical storm by Wednesday.

Reach staff writer Ian Gronau at igronau@newszap.com

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