Southeastern U.S. braces for Hurricane Florence as storm strengthens

Sep 11, 2018, 01:01
Southeastern U.S. braces for Hurricane Florence as storm strengthens

"The Storms in the Atlantic are very risky", Trump tweeted.

Most models point to at least a Category 3 hurricane Florence, with some suggesting a Category 4 storm.

Further strengthening is still expected and Florence will remain a major hurricane as it nears the Carolina coast into Thursday. Tropical storm force winds extend outward up to 45 miles from the center.

The Charlotte region has a better than 50 percent chance of seeing tropical storm-force winds (between 39 and 73 mph) later this week, according to the latest forecasts from the National Hurricane Center. The first impacts were already being seen on barrier islands as risky rip currents and seawater flowing over a coastal road.

The NHC added that Florence, which reached major hurricane status several days ago but weakened into a tropical storm, now has an eye.

As of 11 a.m., Florence was centered about 580 miles south-southeast of Bermuda, moving west at 13 mph.

Florence's center will move between Bermuda and the Bahamas Tuesday and Wednesday and approach the coast of SC or North Carolina on Thursday, according to the center.

The Meteorological Service of Jamaica said at 4:00 am Sunday, Tropical Storm Isaac was centred about 2,475 kilometers east of the Windward Islands.

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While Florence is forecast to stay north of Florida, large swells will impact the east coast of our state resulting in life-threatening surf and rip currents.

Some forecasts call for Florence to stall out after it strikes the coast.

The United States was hit with a series of high-powered hurricanes a year ago, including Hurricane Maria, which killed some 3,000 people in Puerto Rico, and Hurricane Harvey, which killed about 68 people and caused an estimated $1.25 billion in damage with catastrophic flooding in Houston.

Virginia Governor Ralph Northam's office described Florence as possibly the state's "most significant hurricane event in decades", and warned of "catastrophic inland flooding, high winds and possible widespread power outages".

A mandatory evacuation was ordered for residents of Hatteras Island and some other areas of Dare County in North Carolina.

Hurricane Florence is the first of what looks like could be a trio of storms to hit the USA in rapid succession.

This news about Hurricane Olivia comes just weeks after Hurricane Lane brought 3-4 feet of rainfall to parts of Hawaii. And out here we're so fragile.

"The track that Florence is taking is very atypical", Klotzbach said in an email. The storm is now expected to careen into the Carolina coast on Thursday or early Friday, and USA Today reports North Carolina is already in preparation mode: Gov. Roy Cooper has requested a federal declaration disaster, and Cape Hatteras Island is under a mandatory evacuation order for Monday; Duck and Corolla face the same order for Tuesday. That storm was centred 185 km south southeast of the islands.

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The State of Emergency Response Team, which includes the Emergency Management, State Highway Patrol and North Carolina National Guard, are ready to deploy.

In coastal Charleston, South Carolina, city officials offered sandbags to residents.

Lanes will be reversed on four highways, including USA 501, starting at noon Tuesday, McMaster said.

Myrtle Beach hardware stores and supermarkets were busy ringing up sales of bottled water, plywood and generators.

"North Carolina is no stranger to hurricanes".

The University of North Carolina at Wilmington, near the shore, canceled its upcoming alumni weekend and all classes starting at noon Monday, encouraging its students to leave campus for a safer location. That means, she said, that the Wilmington region is going to be affected by what she said is going to be a major hurricane that could reach category 4 strength, which means maximum sustained winds of 130 to 156 miles per hour.

On this path, it will move across the Lesser Antilles on Thursday.

Florence is moving to the west-northwest at 13 miles per hour.

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