Matthew heading for the Bahamas; Watches & Warnings in effect for South Florida

Watches and warnings:

*Hurricane warning from the Broward county line – north.

*Tropical Storm warning from the 7 mile bridge to the Broward/Miami-Dade county line.

Hurricane Matthew is producing strong winds and heavy rains. It is expected to spread dangerous storm surge over the Bahamas later today. The forecast track takes Matthew through the central and northwestern Bahamas by Thursday afternoon. Late Thursday it will be at its closest approach to South Florida. Then it will ride along the east of Florida through Friday. A direct impact to Florida can’t be ruled out as a potential major hurricane with winds up to 130 mph. Broward and portions of Miami-Dade remain in the cone of concern. However, any little shift to the west will mean great impacts for South Florida.

Please make sure your plans and preps are finalized before conditions start deteriorating tonight into Thursday morning.

Broward here is what you need to prepare for:

Hurricane force winds will be possible anywhere between 74 mph or higher. These type of winds can cause damage to sturdy buildings, roofs, windows, doors and garage door failures.

Rainfall can range between 4-10 inches. Isolated tornadoes can’t be ruled out with the outer bands of Matthew.

Seas along the nearshore waters will range between 10-15 feet.

Storm surge flooding possible due to wave action along the coast. This could cause some damage to marinas, docks, boardwalks and piers.

Miami-Dade can prepare for: 

Tropical Storm force winds anywhere between 39 to 73 mph. These type of winds can cause some damage to roofs, awnings, carports and sheds.

Rainfall amounts of 4-7 inches.

Seas in the nearshore waters between 10-15 feet.

Minor storm surge flooding possible especially during times of high tide. Also, wave action can add to beach erosion.

The Florida Keys should prepare for: 

The possibility of experience Tropical Storm Force winds of 39-73 mph with little rain expected. Only 1 to 3 inches possible during the next 2 days.

Seas will build anywhere between 3-7 feet.

Storm surge  is expected only along the immediate shoreline.

Remember it is always best to prepare for the worst and hope for the best. Please keep it tuned to your Storm Station 7 News for the latest developments. A lot of things can change and we want you to be safe and informed.

Vivian Gonzalez 

Meteorologist, AMS Certified 

WSVN Channel 7