More than 100,000 homes are already without power as weather conditions begin to worsen. Brock Long, the administrator of the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA), warned the danger was not only along the coast: "Inland flooding kills a lot of people, unfortunately, and that's what we're about to see", he said.
A man waves the USA national flag in the wind and rain from from Hurricane Florence in Wilmington, North Carolina on September 13, 2018 . Once a Category 4 hurricane with winds of 140 miles per hour (225 kph), the hurricane was downgraded to a Category 1 on Thursday night.
However, that does not make the hurricane any less frightening. Florence is about 644 kilometres wide and it's winds have dropped from a peak of 225 km/h to 165 km/h, reducing the hurricane from a terrifying Category 4 to a Category 2. Those warily staring at Florence grasp in contrast it to Hurricanes Fran and Hugo, which pummeled North Carolina and SC, respectively, more than two decades ago.
The storm was downgraded from a category 4 on Thursday to a category 2, but its massive size (about 400 miles wide) and the storm surge it is bringing with it was expected to hammer the coasts of North Carolina, South Carolina, and perhaps even Georgia.
Instead, the storm is now expected to make landfall over Wilmington, traveling south over Myrtle Beach between Friday and Saturday, and then traveling through SC and North Carolina to the Tennessee border through Sunday into Monday. While hurricane forecast cones are usually right , National Hurricane Center meteorologist Joel Cline says there is just no way to pinpoint the exact location of landfall with any certainty.
Landfall was expected sometime late Thursday and FEMA officials said Wednesday was the last day for people to get out safely. REUTERS/Chris KeanePeople walk past a boarded up building before Hurricane Florence comes ashore in Carolina Beach, North Carolina, U.S., September 12, 2018.
Florence's maximum sustained winds were clocked on Thursday at 105 miles per hour (165 kph). Florence is now moving to the northwest at 17 kilometers per hour. - part of the Outer Banks. Alexander Gerst/ESA/NASA via AP This image provided by NASA shows Hurricane Florence from the International Space Station on Wednesday, Sept.
All that said, a saturated ground, even with tropical storm-force winds, will uproot trees. Its surge could cover all but a sliver of the Carolina coast under as much as 11 feet of ocean water, and days of downpours could unload more than 3 feet of rain, touching off severe flooding.
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Henry McMaster ordered the mandatory evacuation of the state's coastline beginning at noon Tuesday. "This is a serious storm and it's going to effect the entire state", Northam told a news conference. Florence is forecast to dump up to 40 inches (one meter) of rain in some areas after it makes landfall in North and SC. Both Virginia and Maryland have now declared a state of emergency , while the National Park Service is readying itself to deploy a flood levee for the first time ...
Forecasters said Wednesday that Florence's wind field is expanding, making it a large, stable hurricane with a clearly defined eye at its center. A risky storm surge will come before the massive storm makes landfall late Friday or early Saturday.
We've pulled together some of the key elements that explain why officials are so anxious, and what damage Florence could cause. The storm was a risky Category 4 hurricane Wednesday but has been downgraded to a Category 2 storm Thursday.
Hurricane Helene is veering toward Europe and newly formed Subtropical Storm Joyce is not expected to threaten land. Puerto Rico, which is still recovering from a lethal blow by Maria last year, could see some rain and gusty wind, but nothing close to last year.
Rather than pushing up toward western Virginia, the storm's center is now predicted to move across the middle of SC. The eastern United States is in preparation mode as a "monster" Category 4 hurricane approaches the southeast coast. A risky storm surge will come before the massive storm makes landfall late Friday or early Saturday. "This is a storm that is historic, maybe once in a lifetime".
People in North Carolina and SC have the daytime hours Thursday to complete their final preparations to ride out or escape the storm . Hurricane-force winds extended 80 miles (130 kilometers) from its center, and tropical-storm-force winds up to 195 miles (315 kilometers).
Time is running short to get out of the way of Hurricane Florence , a monster of a storm that has a region of more than 10 million people in its potentially devastating sights as it zeroes in on the Southeastern coast. Most of those cancellations are tied to the approaching hurricane, now a Category 2 storm with winds expected onshore late Thursday at more than 80 miles per hour.
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California has almost 54,000 active wells, some of them close to urbanized areas in Southern California and the Central Valley, according to state data. Another 9 percent came from nuclear power, and a third from natural gas. Hawaii is the only other USA state to set a similar goal. It's merely a goal, with no mandate or penalty for falling short.
The center of Florence, a Category 2 hurricane , will approach the coasts of North and SC on Thursday, the NHC said, adding that it was expected to weaken after it moved inland. Duke Energy, the nation's No. 2 power company, said Florence could knock out electricity to three-quarters of its 4 million customers in the Carolinas, and outages could last for weeks.
Almost 1000 prisoners in SC will not be moved from their cells, despite a mandatory evacuation order in the area. The storm will stay over this area of the USA through the weekend with North Carolina cities Wilmington and Jacksonville expected to receive up to 130 centimetres of rain.
North Carolina Governor Roy Cooper is foreboding in his assessment Hurricane Florence . Hurricane Florence may now be dipping a bit south and hitting a portion of the Great State of Georgia. Duke Energy, the nation's No. 2 power company, said Florence could knock out electricity to three-quarters of its four million customers in the Carolinas, and outages could last for weeks.
The NHC stressed, however, that while a slow weakening is expected over the next 24 hours "Florence is still forecast to be an extremely unsafe major hurricane when it nears the U.S. North and SC and Virginia declared emergencies earlier in the week. Florence is forecast to dump up to three feet (almost a meter) of rain in some areas after it makes landfall in North and SC.
The storm's maximum sustained winds were clocked at 193km/h, before Florence was downgraded from a Category 4. "This is a real hurricane that we have coming and our goal is to protect lives and property", said Steve Goldstein, NOAA liaison to FEMA.
The images were taken this morning at 7:50 a.m. EDT with a high-definition video camera mounted on the exterior of the space station and depict "stark and sobering views of Hurricane Florence", stated NASA officials. This photo provided by NASA shows Hurricane Florence from the International Space Station on Monday, Sept. 10, 2018, as it threatens the U.S. East Coast.
The hurricane center's projected track Wednesday had Florence hovering off the southern North Carolina coast from Thursday night until landfall Saturday morning or so, about a day later than previously expected. Florence's predicted pause and slow southward turn off North Carolina on Friday means some coastal areas will get damaging hurricane-force winds for more than 24 hours.