Published: Thu, September 13, 2018
Research | By Jody Lindsey

Hurricane Florence looms over East Coast — WHAT’S HAPPENING

Hurricane Florence looms over East Coast — WHAT’S HAPPENING

A hurricane warning is in effect from the South Santee River in SC to Duck, North Carolina. What makes this hurricane extremely risky are the deadly storm surges, mammoth coastal flooding and historic rainfall expected far inland. Florence is now a strong Category 2 storm.

He said: "We are ready but this is going to be one of the biggest ones to ever hit our country". He added later, "Most of the fatalities in these tropical systems is water".

As of 2am EDT today (13 September), Florence was about 37km east-southeast of Wilmington, North Carolina and 450km east-southeast of Myrtle Beach, South Carolina.

As of 11 p.m. ET Wednesday, the storm was centred 455 kilometres east-southeast of Wilmington, N.C., moving northwest at 28 km/h.

With South Carolina's beach towns more in the bull's-eye because of the shifting forecast, OH vacationers Chris and Nicole Roland put off their departure from North Myrtle Beach to get the maximum amount of time on the sand. A high-pressure ridge over the Central and Eastern US is said to be blocking the storm's further movement along its original vectors, though it could still curve again once over land.

The ISS is now orbiting at an altitude of about 400 km above the surface of the Earth meaning it has an incredible view of Hurricane Florence as it rages. "If this blows at 120 mph for four hours, ... you lose a shingle every two minutes, and all of the sudden, you've lost your whole roof after four hours", Myers said. "And that will produce a lot of damage as well as prolong the beach erosion".

Several of the images were taken when the ISS was directly over the eye of the hurricane. Hundreds of thousands of people have already evacuated. Officials are urging others in its path to follow suit, or prepare for the worst.

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Florence continued to weaken overnight but it's still a hurricane and will likely maintain that status when it reaches the shoreline, though not as Category 3 or 4 - perhaps not even as a Category 2.

"Some fluctuations in strength are possible through Thursday morning", it noted.

"Unfortunately, Hurricane Florence is setting out to be a devastating event to the Carolinas, and potentially Virginia as well".

The storm could cause a life-threatening storm surge, essentially walls of water, ahead of landfall which is why FEMA warns that Wednesday is the last feasible day to evacuate areas vulnerable to the storm. A surge of at least 4 feet is predicted for a much larger area.

About 5.25 million people live in areas under hurricane warnings or watches, and 4.9 million live in places covered by tropical storm warnings or watches, the U.S. National Weather Service said.

A state of emergency has also been declared in Maryland, North Carolina, South Carolina, Virginia and Washington. Heavy rains were forecast to extend into the Appalachians, affecting parts of Alabama, Tennessee, Kentucky and West Virginia.

Most of the area will likely endure winds near or just below Tropical Storm force Friday. That puts it at the upper range of Category 2 storms, which have winds from 96 to 110 miles per hour. Older homes and less-reinforced homes will sustain some wind damage as well. Many shallowly rooted trees will be snapped or uprooted and block numerous roads. The power is going to be off for weeks.

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