As of 5 p.m. on Saturday, May 28, 2016, Tropical Storm Bonnie is located over the Atlantic Ocean about 125 south-southeast of Charleston, South Carolina and is moving toward the northwest at 10 mph – this general direction is expected to continue through Saturday night. The tropical cyclone is forecast to make landfall on the South Carolina coast on Sunday.
After making landfall, Bonnie is expected to weaken back to Tropical Depression 2 on Memorial Day as the storm makes a turn to the northeast and travels up the South Carolina coastline. Tropical Depression 2 is then expected to continue northeastward into eastern North Carolina on Tuesday before exiting back out to the Atlantic on Thursday.
Tropical Storm Bonnie has maximum sustained winds at 40 mph, with higher gusts. Tropical-storm-force winds extend outward up to 60 miles (95 km) from the storm’s center, mainly to the northwest. Some additional strengthening is possible tonight as Bonnie moves over the warm waters of the Gulf Stream. Gradual weakening is forecast on Sunday after Bonnie makes landfall.
TROPICAL STORM WARNING: A Tropical Storm Warning is in effect for Savannah River to Little River Inlet South Carolina. A Tropical Storm Warning means that tropical storm conditions are expected somewhere within the warning area, in this case within the next 12 hours.
WIND: Tropical storm conditions are expected to first reach the South Carolina coast within the warning area later tonight or early Sunday.
RAINFALL: Bonnie is expected to produce total rainfall accumulations of 1 to 3 inches with maximum totals of 5 inches from eastern South Carolina through southeastern North Carolina.
STORM SURGE: Storm surge inundation of 1 to 2 feet above ground level is possible within the tropical storm warning area during the next high tide on Sunday morning.
SURF: Bonnie is expected to produce life-threatening surf and rip current conditions along portions of the southeastern United States coast through Memorial Day weekend.
TORNADOES: Isolated tornadoes are possible late tonight and early Sunday over the immediate coastal region from central South Carolina through southern North Carolina.
Spaghetti models are in good agreement that Bonnie will gradually turn toward the north-northwest as it moves around the west side of a deep-layer ridge, and moving onshore between Charleston and Beaufort, South Carolina, in about 18-24 hours.
The NHC model forecasts that Bonnie will stall or meander along the coastal region of South Carolina in 24-36 hours before drifting off to the east or northeast by 48 hours. The NHC forecast track is similar to the previous advisory track and closely follows a blend of GFS and ECMWF models.