The Latest: Dorian expected to weaken before Canada landfall

Beaufort Police officers check a sailboat for occupants in Beaufort, N.C. after Hurricane Dorian passed the North Carolina coast on Friday, Sept. 6, 2019. (AP Photo/Tom Copeland)
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HALIFAX, Nova Scotia (AP) — The Latest on Hurricane Dorian (all times local):

4:30 p.m.

Weather forecasters in Canada say Hurricane Dorian is expected to lose strength when it makes landfall near Halifax.

Dorian strengthened Saturday to a Category 2 storm with 100 mph winds, up from 85 mph, a strengthening that raised it from a Category 1 to a Category 2 storm.

Canadian Hurricane Centre meteorologist Ian Hubbard told The Associated Press that Dorian is expected to weaken and make landfall near Halifax, Nova Scotia, as a Category 1 hurricane.

The last Category 2 hurricane to hit Canada was Hurricane Juan in 2003.

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3:50 p.m.

The outer bands of Hurricane Dorian have started lashing Canada's southern New Brunswick and mainland Nova Scotia with strong winds and heavy rain.

The Canadian Hurricane Centre says the storm is expected to make landfall near Halifax later Saturday evening, unleashing a heavier barrage of torrential rain, pounding surf and howling winds.

And U.S. forecasters say it's strengthening as it approaches, with maximum sustained winds of 100 mph.

Winds exceeding 55 mph have already been reported in parts of southwestern Nova Scotia and southern New Brunswick.

Forecasters say the storm is likely to uproot trees and bring the possibility of flash flooding, as well as likely power outages.

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2:20 p.m.

The U.S. Coast Guard says it has rescued a total of 290 people in the Bahamas following Hurricane Dorian.

The Coast Guard said Saturday that six MH-60 Jayhawk helicopters are carrying out search and rescue missions and providing logistical support. It says nine Coast Guard cutters are also helping in the Bahamas.

The Coast Guard says Bahamian emergency officials and security forces are in charge of search and rescue efforts.

The United Nations says eight tons of food supplies are to arrive by ship Saturday. U.N. World Food Programme spokesman Herve Verhoosel says 14,700 ready-to-eat meals as well as logistical and telecommunications equipment are being delivered.

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1:50 p.m.

Weather forecasters say Hurricane Dorian is picking up strength as it approaches Canada.

In its latest advisory, issued before 2 p.m. EDT on Saturday, the National Hurricane Center in Miami said the hurricane's maximum sustained winds had increased to 100 mph from 85 mph, raising it one notch from a Category 1 to a Category 2 storm.

The storm was centered about 140 miles south-southwest of Halifax, Nova Scotia, and 180 miles southeast of Eastport, Maine.

Forecasters say the center of Dorian is expected to move across central or eastern Nova Scotia late Saturday afternoon or early evening, pass near or over Prince Edward Island late Saturday, and then move to Newfoundland and Labrador on Sunday.

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1:20 p.m.

More than 1,100 Bahamians have arrived in Palm Beach, Florida, after being evacuated by cruise ship from their hurricane-battered islands.

The Grand Celebration cruise ship returned to its home port after setting sail Thursday for Freeport, Grand Bahama, to deliver more than 112 tons of supplies and ferrying dozens of health workers and emergency crews.

Hurricane Dorian produced catastrophic damage across the Bahamas as a Category 5 storm. The resulting humanitarian crisis has prompted a massive relief effort.

The cruise line industry is aiding the relief effort by sending ships to transport food, water and personnel to the islands, while rescuing Bahamians looking to flee the devastation.

Officials with Bahamas Paradise Cruise Line, which operates the Grand Celebration, said the arriving Bahamians were welcomed to Florida by relief agencies.

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12:10 p.m.

Officials in North Carolina say search-and-rescue teams are going door to door to check on people who may be injured or in need of assistance after Hurricane Dorian swamped Ocracoke Island with floodwaters.

Gov. Roy Cooper's office said in a news release Saturday that emergency officials have transported fuel trucks, generators, and food and water to Ocracoke, which is accessible only by boat or air.

Dorian made landfall Friday morning over the Outer Banks. According to the governor's office, the U.S. Coast Guard flew seven air rescue missions to transport people with medical conditions on Ocracoke to safety, and first responders evacuated 32 people elsewhere on the Outer Banks by ground.

The news release says about 200 people were in shelters and about 57,000 were without electricity as of midday.

There have been no reports of serious injuries or deaths since the storm arrived.

The governor was visiting coastal counties Saturday to view the damage.

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11 a.m.

Hurricane Dorian has accelerated its approach as it heads toward Canada, where it is expected to weaken.

The National Hurricane Center in Miami said in its advisory at 11 a.m. EDT that the storm is moving northeast at 29 mph, up from 25 mph earlier Saturday morning.

While it remains classified as a Category 1 hurricane, Dorian is expected to fade to a tropical storm by the time it moves across Nova Scotia.

Regardless of its status, Dorian is expected to bring hurricane conditions to eastern Nova Scotia and western Newfoundland beginning late Saturday. Hurricane warnings are in effect for both areas. A hurricane watch is in effect for Prince Edward Island and the Magdalen Islands.

Tropical storm warnings have been discontinued for the coast of Massachusetts, Nantucket and Martha's Vineyard.

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10:20 a.m.

High winds and rough seas from Hurricane Dorian have prompted the cancellation of ferry service to Martha's Vineyard and Nantucket in Massachusetts.

The Steamship Authority says ferries to the two islands will not be running Saturday morning because of the weather conditions, but some service is scheduled to resume in the afternoon and evening.

Dorian brought tropical storm-force winds to Cape Cod and the islands on Saturday as it passed near southeastern Massachusetts on its way toward Nova Scotia.

Eversource reported more than 1,000 power outages in and around Cape Cod on Saturday morning.

The National Weather Service says a buoy off Nantucket reported sustained winds of 56 mph and gusts of up to 81 mph on Saturday morning.

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10:20 a.m.

The eastern coast of Maine is under a tropical storm warning with the potential for wind gusts up to 45 mph, power outages, dangerous surf and beach erosion.

The National Weather Service said the warning caused by Hurricane Dorian passing offshore applied Saturday to areas east of Bar Harbor.

Meteorologist Donald Dumont of the National Weather Service in Caribou warned people to keep a safe distance from the rocky shore to avoid "sneaker waves" that might sweep them into the ocean.

Acadia National Park took the precaution of closing Sand Beach and Thunder Hole. Ten years earlier, a 7-year-old girl died and others were injured when a wave caused by Hurricane Bill swept over sightseers at Thunder Hole.

The effects of Dorian were expected subside by late Saturday evening in Maine.

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8:45 a.m.

Weather forecasters expect a weakening Hurricane Dorian to arrive off the southeastern Canada coast with hurricane-force winds, heavy rain, and dangerous storm surge.

The National Hurricane Center in Miami said at 8 a.m. EDT that even if the Category 1 hurricane downgrades to a tropical storm, hurricane conditions are expected in portions of eastern Nova Scotia and western Newfoundland by late Saturday or early Sunday.

Canadian Hurricane Centre meteorologist Ian Hubbard said the storm is expected to lose its hurricane status as it crosses Nova Scotia. It is expected to make landfall in Nova Scotia between 6 p.m. and 8 p.m. EDT.

Forecasters said that as the storm exits the United States, tropical storm conditions will whisk through portions of southeastern Massachusetts and Maine.

Maximum sustained winds on Saturday were clocked at 85 mph, moving northeast at 25 mph.

Hurricanes in Canada are somewhat rare in part because once the storms reach colder Canadian waters, they lose their main source of energy.

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5:20 a.m.

Tropical storm-force winds are ruffling southeastern Massachusetts as Hurricane Dorian continues to move north.

Early Saturday, the center of the weakening Category 1 storm was around 145 miles southeast of Nantucket, Massachusetts, and around 410 miles (660 kilometers) southwest of Halifax, Nova Scotia. The storm, which is moving at northeast at around 25 mph, is expected to produce hurricane conditions in parts of the Canadian province later Saturday.

The Canadian Hurricane Center has adjusted its warnings for Nova Scotia, Newfoundland and Quebec's Lower North Shore. A hurricane warning is in effect parts of eastern Nova Scotia and western Newfoundland and a hurricane watch is in effect for Prince Edward Island and the Magdalen Islands. A tropical storm warning is in effect for other parts of the Canadian provinces as well as portions of Massachusetts and Maine.

The storm's top sustained winds are near 85 mph.

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5:10 a.m.

Stranded residents of North Carolina's Outer Banks are beginning to assess the damage wrought by Hurricane Dorian.

Steve Harris has lived on Ocracoke Island for most of the last 19 years. He's ridden out eight hurricanes, but he said Friday that he'd never seen a storm bring such devastation to his community.

Harris lost his car to the storm and his air conditioning is damaged, but he said he's blessed that his condominium is on the third floor and he is insured.

The U.S. Coast Guard began landing local law enforcement officers on the island Friday via helicopter and airlifting out the sick, elderly and others in distress.

By Friday evening, Gov. Roy Cooper said officials weren't aware of serious injuries from the storm on the Outer Banks.

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