After passing Bermuda on Thursday, Hurricane Lee, the 13th named storm of the 2023 Atlantic hurricane season, is now approaching New England and Atlantic Canada.
According to the latest update from the National Hurricane Center (NHC), as of 8 a.m. EST on Friday, the center of Lee was about 460 miles south-southeast of Nantucket, Mass. It was moving north at 16 mph. Lee is forecasted by the NHC to continue that motion, moving farther away from Bermuda and approaching the coast of New England and Atlantic Canada today and into Saturday. Lee is then expected to turn toward the north-northeast and northeast and move across Atlantic Canada Saturday night and Sunday.
The storm isn't nearly as powerful as it was last week when it was categorized as a Category 5 hurricane. As of Friday morning, the storm was a Category 1 storm, producing winds of up to 85 mph. Still, the NHC has issued warnings for areas in the storm's path, and is alerting those that Lee "is still expected to be a large and dangerous storm when it reaches eastern New England and Atlantic Canada."
The NHC currently has a Hurricane Watch in effect for Petit Manan Point, Maine, to the U.S./Canada border; New Brunswick from the U.S./Canada border to Point Lepreau, including Grand Manan Island; and Nova Scotia from Digby to Medway Harbour.
It also has a Tropical Storm Warning in effect for Bermuda; Westport, Mass., northward to the U.S./Canada border; Martha's Vineyard; Nantucket; New Brunswick from the U.S./Canada border to Fort Lawrence, including Grand Manan Island; and Nova Scotia from Fort Lawrence to Point Tupper.
Some airlines have expanded their travel waivers in light of Lee's expected arrival today.
American Airlines' waiver still only includes L.F. Wade International Airport in Bermuda and includes all flights to, from, or through the airport through Friday, Sept. 16. Delta Air Lines' waiver now includes four airports—Boston Logan, Bangor International, Portland International, and Rhode Island T.F. Green International Airport. Its waiver includes flights at those airports on Sept. 16 and 17.
United has also extended its waiver to include all four of those airports along with Manchester-Boston Regional Airport, Presque Isle International Airport, and Rhode Island T.F. Green International Airport. JetBlue's waiver includes Martha's Vineyard Airport, Nantucket Memorial Airport-ACK, and L.F. Wade International Airport.
United's waiver for Bermuda runs through Friday, Sept. 15 and the waiver for Martha's Vineyard and Nantucket runs through Sept. 17.
Cruise ship changes
A number of cruise lines made changes to scheduled itineraries earlier this week, including Oceania, Carnival Cruise Line, Royal Caribbean, and Disney Cruise Line. Jewel of the Seas, which leaves from Cape Liberty (NJ) today. The ship will overnight and then spend the day in Manhattan in lieu of visiting Halifax on Sept. 16. The rest of the itinerary remains unchanged.
Caribbean Princess, which is currently on a 10-day voyage that departed Quebec on Sept. 9, visited Sydney (Nova Scotia) on Wednesday instead of today, replacing a scheduled visit to Charlottetown (Prince Edward Island). Plans are in the works for the ship to dock in Boston beginning Sept. 15 for an extended period as a refuge from the hurricane. The remainder of the itinerary will be evaluated as the situation progresses, but the cruise is expected to end as scheduled in New York on Sept. 19.
Holland America's Zaandam, which departed Boston on Sept. 13, will call in Eastport, Maine instead of Portland today (Sept. 14). After leaving Eastport, the ship will call in Halifax, Nova Scotia instead of Saint John, New Brunswick on Sept. 15. After leaving Halifax, Zaandam will spend the day at sea, then call in Sydney, Nova Scotia on Sept. 17.
Norwegian Escape, which departed New York on Sept. 10, visited Saint John, New Brunswick instead of Bar Harbor on Sept. 13. It will then head back to New York, arriving on Sept. 15 where it will remain until the official end of the sailing on Sept. 17. Its call to Halifax has been canceled.
American Cruise Lines will move four of its coastal ships to ports starting Thursday evening, through Friday. They will remain at dock as long as necessary depending on the weather. American Constitution and American Independence will dock in Portland, Maine; American Eagle will dock in Bangor, Maine, and American Star will dock in New Bedford, Massachusetts.
Hurtigruten's Roald Amundsen, is skipping two ports of call -- Easport and Rockland, Maine -- and docking in Portland today (Sept. 15), where it will stay docked alongside the pier through at least Sept. 17. The ship is expected to arrive in Boston as scheduled on Sept. 19.