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BC-TROPICAL WEATHER-THE LATEST
The Latest: Dorian weakens to a Category 2 hurricane
FREEPORT, Bahamas (AP) – Hurricane Dorian has weakened to a Category 2 storm as it continues to batter the Bahamas with life-threatening storm surge.
The U.S. National Hurricane Center says Dorian’s maximum sustained winds decreased Tuesday morning to near 110 mph (175 kph). But it’s expected to remain a powerful hurricane during the next few days.
Dorian is centered about 45 miles (70 kilometers) north of Freeport in the Bahamas and is moving northwest near 2 mph (4 kph).
TROPICAL WEATHER-EVACUEES HELP
Atlanta comfort Hurricane Dorian evacuees with free services
ATLANTA (AP) – Atlanta is welcoming Hurricane Dorian evacuees with open arms, camping spaces and America’s favorite pastime.
News outlets say Atlanta Motor Speedway and the Atlanta Braves are offering free services to residents from mandatory evacuation areas throughout Florida, Georgia, South Carolina and North Carolina.
The Speedway can handle thousands of campers and is offering free spaces to dry RVs and tent campers. They’re also offering limited spaces with water, power and sewer for $20 per night.
The Major League Baseball team is giving out complimentary tickets to games Tuesday and Thursday against the Toronto Blue Jays and the Washington Nationals. Evacuees must show valid I.D. at ticket counters while supplies last.
Airbnbs in Alabama, Florida, Georgia and the Carolinas are also extending a helping hand by offering free housing to evacuees.
North Carolina’s chief justice to visit Randolph County
ASHEBORO, N.C. (AP) – North Carolina’s chief justice will spend a day in Randolph County, where she’ll visit with students, court officials and faith leaders.
Chief Justice Cheri Beasley will update students, faculty and the public on the status of the state courts when she speaks Tuesday at Randolph County Community College in Asheboro. After that, Beasley will visit with judicial officials and staff at the Randolph County Courthouse.
In the afternoon, she’ll join faith leaders and elected officials at First United Methodist Church in Asheboro for a Faith and Justice Roundtable.
Participants will discuss the intersection of the faith community and the court system in the lives of people affected by the criminal justice system.
N. Carolina authorities investigate intentionally-set blaze
(Information from: The Charlotte Observer, http://www.charlotteobserver.com)
CHARLOTTE, N.C. (AP) – Authorities in North Carolina say they think a fire that erupted at a home with two adults inside was intentionally set.
The Charlotte Observer reports the Charlotte Fire Department responded to a home that was engulfed in flames early Monday morning. The two adults that were home at the time were able to escape unharmed. The Red Cross is assisting them.
The paper says investigators have not confirmed how the fire was started, but fire officials say they believe it was intentional.
TROPICAL WEATHER-SLOW STORM
Dorian isn’t moving because the upper atmosphere is too calm
Powerful Hurricane Dorian has been going nowhere because nothing high up is making it budge.
Usually the upper atmosphere’s winds push and pull hurricanes north or west or at least somewhere. They’re so powerful that they dictate where these big storms go.
But meteorologists say the steering currents at 18,000 feet (5,486 meters) above ground have ground to a halt because high pressure and low pressure systems are cancelling each other out. The steering currents aren’t moving, so neither is Dorian.
After reaching record-tying wind speeds on landfall in the Bahamas, the storm just stalled. Its eyewall first hit Grand Bahama Island Sunday night, and 18 hours later part of the eye still lingered there.
While it’s horrible for the Bahamas, meteorologists say it may help spare Florida a bit.
TROPICAL WEATHER-NORTH CAROLINA-THE LATEST
The Latest: N Carolina officials see Dorian doing less harm
RALEIGH, N.C. (AP) – North Carolina officials say they expect far less rain or flooding from Hurricane Dorian than the state experienced during Florence last year.
State Emergency Management Meteorologist Katie Webster said Monday that Dorian is expected to pick up its speed as it churns north along the East Coast. Webster says Dorian could drop 5 to 10 inches of rain on North Carolina, with points along the coast getting a foot or more. That’s about half the maximum rainfall totals during Florence last September.
Florence was blamed for 45 storm-related deaths in North Carolina and the National Hurricane Center lists it as causing $22 billion in damage.
Gov. Roy Cooper said he’s activated 300 members of the National Guard to help with preparations and storm response.
White House: Trump gets hourly updates on Hurricane Dorian
STERLING, Va. (AP) – President Donald Trump was receiving hourly updates on Hurricane Dorian while at his private Virginia golf club.
That’s according to White House spokeswoman Stephanie Grisham.
Trump spent several hours at the club on Labor Day.
The president has also been retweeting storm updates issued by the National Hurricane Center.
Trump participated in a briefing on Dorian at the Federal Emergency Management Agency’s Washington headquarters on Sunday.
Dorian was hovering over the Bahamas on Monday after pummeling the islands with winds topping 150 mph (240 kph).
Forecasters say the hurricane is likely to begin pulling away from the Bahamas early Tuesday and curving to the northeast parallel to the U.S. Southeast seaboard.
Trump has declared emergencies in the southeastern states of Florida, Georgia and South Carolina.
MOOSE LODGE SHOOTING
4 wounded in shooting outside private North Carolina party
ROCKY MOUNT, N.C. (AP) – Police in North Carolina are working to find out who shot four people outside a private party.
Rocky Mount police say it happened late Sunday in the parking lot of a Moose lodge in the city.
Two victims were found outside the building, with one treated at the scene and the other transported to a hospital. Two gunshot victims arrived at the hospital in personal cars.
Police said no one was in custody.
The Moose are a fraternal organization.