CHARLOTTE, NC (WBTV) - That's the million dollar question. Matthew remains a Category 3 hurricane with maximum sustained winds of 120 mph and plowing northwestward through the Bahamas this evening and overnight. It will be dangerously close to the east coast of Florida by late Thursday and early Friday, possibly as a Category 4 hurricane again.
After this point the uncertainty remains sky high as to where Matthew will go next. The most powerful weather computers in the world have been inconsistent on any one solution to this question. Through Monday, there was fairly good consensus Matthew would make landfall around the southeastern coast of North Carolina.
On Tuesday, most models remained steadfast in this idea, but the European Model (which has a very good track record) suggested this storm would reach Savannah, GA then peel off the eastern seaboard - head into the Atlantic - and possibly spare the Carolinas.
After lengthy consideration, the National Hurricane Center adjusted Matthew's forecast trajectory to closely match the European's storm track. Well wouldn't you know it, the European's latest computer output is now keeping Matthew closer to the coast again, ugh!
See the accompanying NHC forecast track from earlier today. But more importantly, tune in to WBTV News at 5 p.m. for the latest NHC forecast track, and don't be surprised if they bump it back closer to the coast again.
Bottom line - anyone with a stake in coastal weather needs to remain on high alert for dangerous weather conditions Friday into Saturday. This includes torrential and flooding rains along with strong and damaging winds.
The most vulnerable counties in the WBTV viewing area remain east of Charlotte with Richmond and Chesterfield counties seeing the highest threats.
New Track Forecast coming at 5 p.m.
FULL COVERAGE: CLICK HERE TO TRACK HURRICANE MATTHEW