Hurricane Florence threatens millions on US East Coast

Cesar Mills
September 13, 2018

Florence is now a Category 4 Hurricane barrelling towards the US East Coast with some experts claiming it will make a direct hit.

Forecasts hypothesize that Florence's center will arrive at the South and North Carolina border on Friday as either a Category 3 or 4 hurricane.

A number of other businesses, including Sam's Club, Lowe's, and a range of local retailers across North Carolina and SC, were shut down or were planning to shut down ahead of the storm.

"An Air Force Reserve Hurricane Hunter aircraft that was in the hurricane until just after midnight" recorded a peak wind gust of around 150 miles per hour, according to the hurricane center.

Carolinians are smart to be wary of Hurricane Florence's impact on gas, after Hurricane Katrina cut supply lines from the Gulf Coast in 2005, leading to widespread shortages and consumer panic. Winds have decreased a little bit this morning down to 130mph but that's only because it's undergone what's called an eyewall replacement cycle that temporarily weakens the storm. "If we try to leave, we'll just get stuck in the rain", she said.

Tecklenburg said his flood-prone city is preparing for "copious rain" by clearing out the city's drainage system and getting boats and portable pumps ready. It looks like it will be North Carolina. "We're kind of at the mercy of the storm".

A hurricane watch has been placed in effect for Edisto Beach South Carolina to the North Carolina-Virginia border, and a storm surge watch is in place for the same zone. "That means we're going to see a lot of rain associated to the storm".

More than 1 million residents have been ordered to evacuate from the coastline of the three states, while university campuses, schools and factories were being shuttered. "There's no canned goods", Kristin Harrington said as she shopped at a Walmart in Wilmington.

Town Manager Mike Cramer said law enforcement officers will try to assess how many people are still on the island immediately south of Wilmington.

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"We will handle it".

"We hope to have something left when we get home", she said.

"Don't play games with it".

"This one really scares me", Graham said.

North Carolina's governor, Roy Cooper, said: "North Carolina is taking #HurricaneFlorence seriously, and you should too".

Dubbed the "Storm of a lifetime", the National Weather Service expects the hurricane to reach the Carolinas on Thursday or Friday, and may linger over the weekend - bringing with it "catastrophic" winds and flooding rainfall. Winds: Sustained or frequent winds gusts up to or in excess of 74 miles per hour are possible in the Hurricane Watch area Thursday night through Friday.

Forecasters said Wednesday that Florence's wind field is expanding, making it a large, stable hurricane with a clearly defined eye at its center.

Some strengthening is forecast through Wednesday night, drawing energy from the warm water.

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.

Other reports by GizPress

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