WRIGHT-PATTERSON AIR FORCE BASE -- Hurricane Joaquin is forcing three Air Force planes and a Navy jet to relocate to Wright-Patterson Air Force Base this weekend.
A Navy P-3 submarine hunter jet is expected to arrive Friday at the base near Dayton, Ohio, and three Air Force C-17 cargo planes are expected Saturday, according to WCPO media partner WHIO.
Wright-Patterson spokesman Marie Vanover said the Navy might send more aircraft to the base to get out of Joaquin's path, which strengthened Thursday to "an extremely dangerous Category 4 hurricane."
The National Hurricane Center in Miami said Thursday afternoon that additional strengthening is expected over the next 24 hours, as the storm moves past the Bahamas, bringing winds, heavy rain, dangerous surf and significant storm surge.
The storm has maximum sustained winds of 130 mph and is moving southwest at 6 mph. It is about 70 miles south-southeast of San Salvador, Bahamas.
A hurricane watch is in effect for much of the Bahamas and other nearby islands. Forecasters say the center of Joaquin should move over or near portions of the central Bahamas Thursday afternoon and night.
Forecast maps show the storm passing the Bahamas and then making its way toward the U.S. over the next couple of days.