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Forecasters Decide Which Of Two Possible Paths Cat 4 Hurricane Sam Will Likely Take

A look at Sam's anticipated track by AccuWeather. Photo Credit: AccuWeather
The latest projected path for Sam, released Wednesday morning, Sept. 29 by the National Hurricane Center. Photo Credit: NWS NOAA National Hurricane Center

When Hurricane Sam strengthened to major Category 4 status as it churned in the Atlantic basin last week, forecasters outlined two possible paths for the monster storm.

They said that Sam would either veer on a west-northwest track, which would take it closer to the US coast, or continue to turn progressively to the north.

Now, it looks very likely that Sam will follow the latter path.

And make no mistake. That's a good thing.

That's because it should stay well out to sea. Big waves along the Atlantic Coast should be the main impact from the storm.

As of Wednesday morning, Sept. 29, the center of Hurricane Sam is located over the Atlantic Ocean about 450 miles east of the northern Leeward Islands, the NOAA National Hurricane Center said.

Winds are near 130 mph with higher gusts, maintaining its Cat 4 hurricane status on the Saffir-Simpson Hurricane Wind Scale. 

It's moving toward the northwest around 9 mph, and that general motion is expected during the next couple of days, with an increase in forward speed.

A turn toward the north is forecast by Friday, Oct. 1. 

Significant swells will likely reach the east coast of the United States and Atlantic Canada by the weekend, the Hurricane Center said. 

"These swells will likely cause life-threatening surf and rip current conditions, and beachgoers and other interests along these coasts are urged to follow the advice of lifeguards and local officials through the upcoming weekend," said the Hurricane Center.

For a look at the latest projected paths for Sam, click on the two images above.

This continues to be a developing story. Check back to Daily Voice for updates.

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