Carolinas brace for extremely unsafe Hurricane Florence

Audrey Hill
September 11, 2018

It will continue to remain an extremely risky major hurricane through Thursday.

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. Latest forecasts have Florence making landfall in the vicinity of Wilmington, North Carolina Thursday evening/night.

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".

Where is the hurricane now?

According to the NHC advisory, Hurricane Florence is now located 575 miles (925 km) south-southeast of Bermuda and 1,230 miles (1,985 km) east-southeast of Cape Fear, North Carolina.

By 11 p.m. Sunday, Florence was moving across the Atlantic Ocean at about 7 miles per hour, and it was almost a Category 2 hurricane, with peak winds of 90 miles per hour. More evacuation orders are likely to come.

What else should I know?

The governors of North and SC and Virginia declared states of emergency far ahead of the approaching storm.

"We here in North Carolina are bracing for a hard hit", Cooper said during a press conference outlining the state's preparations. The state's emergency management agency said it is "preparing for the possibility of a large-scale disaster".

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To the east, Hurricanes Isaac and Helene (far right) are seen in the Atlantic Ocean.

Florence had reached Category 3 strength earlier Monday, but data from hurricane hunter aircraft indicate the storm is quickly getting stronger as it moves over warm Atlantic waters.

No coastal watches or warnings were in effect as of Monday morning.

NHC spokesman Dennis Feltgen said historically, 90 percent of fatalities from hurricanes, tropical storms and tropical depressions have been caused by water. Residents should continue preparing for the likelihood of direct impacts from the storm, which could include intense flooding, rainfall, damaging winds, large and unsafe surf and storm surge.

Dare County officials ordered everyone to leave Hatteras Island on Monday.

"The Department of Defense is working very closely with the Department of Homeland Security and is prepared to assist FEMA and our other Federal partners in supporting the States impacted by the storm", Manning said.

Hurricane Florence is on course for landfall later this week in the Carolinas.

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

Other reports by MaliBehiribAe

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