Weather Underground meteorology director Jeff Masters said Florence eventually could strike as merely a Category 1 hurricane with winds less than 100 miles per hour (160 kph), but that's still enough to cause at least $1 billion in damage.
Hurricane Florence brought a storm surge of some 3 meters (10 feet) as it began battering the USA east coast early on Friday.
Jamie Thompson walks through flooded sections of East Front Street near Union Point Park in New Bern, N.C. Forecasters said conditions will deteriorate throughout Friday.
Preceded first by the storm surge and the winds, heavy rains were picking up as of late Thursday afternoon, the beginning of an onslaught that for some areas may not relent for days.
BB&T, which is based out of Winston-Salem, North Carolina and operates 1,900 branches across the country, is likely to be among the most affected by Hurricane Florence. A few hearty locals gathered at Cape Fear Wine and Beer pub in downtown Wilmington.
The massive power behind Hurricane Florence resulted in awesome, and downright terrifying, images and videos taken from space. "We've prepared all our supplies at home and frankly, we were bored".
"I'm not going to put our personnel in harm's way, especially for people that we've already told to evacuate", Wrightsville Beach Police Chief Dan House said. "If God's coming for you, you can't run from him".
As Florence reaches landfall, storm surges are the biggest concern, with 49% of U.S. hurricane deaths attributed to surges.
"Today was my day to come home, I'm so glad it wasn't Friday 'cause I don't know if I'd have gotten out of town", said Beverly Stasko.
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"We're just trying to plan for the future here, not having a house for an extended period of time", David Garrigus said. It is expected start affecting North Carolina and SC as early as September 13.
Duke Energy Co. said Florence could knock out electricity to three-quarters of its 4 million customers in the Carolinas, and outages could last for weeks. There is also a "slight" risk of tornadoes in the coastal region of North Carolina.
One of the biggest concerns around the storm is its slow rate of speed - just before 2 p.m. ET, Florence was located about 435 miles southeast of Wilmington, North Carolina moving at just 16 m.p.h.
More than a million coastal residents of SC were ordered by Gov. Henry McMaster to evacuate starting at noon Tuesday ahead of Hurricane Florence.
At the time of writing, over 116,000 people were watching the storm approach the tower, which "is a privately owned surplus Coast Guard Light Station", that also doubles as a "unique adventure bed & breakfast" when the weather is more appropriate.
Members of the Missouri Search and Rescue, part of FEMA, unload their gear at a staging area as Hurricane Florence starts to make landfall in Lealand, North Carolina, Sept. 13, 2018.
Aside from wind-shear dangers, concerns are now shifting to flooding and storm surge issues.
Emergency declarations were in force in Georgia, South and North Carolina, Virginia, Maryland and the District of Columbia.
When it comes to floods, extreme caution has been advised by state and local officials: just several inches of running floodwater can knock a full-grown person off their feet, and just a foot of running water can sweep a medium-sized passenger vehicle off the road.
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Meghan Markle was born Rachel Meghan Markle , on August 4, 1981 to parents Doria Ragland and father Thomas Markle . Markle, was recuperating from heart surgery when Harry and Meghan married at Windsor Castle on May 19.
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Water kills more people in hurricanes than wind, and he said it will still be an extremely risky storm for rain and storm surge. The wide storm weakened to a Category 3 hurricane Wednesday and forecasters expect it to weaken further as it nears the shore.
Boarding up his home in Myrtle Beach, South Carolina , Chris Pennington monitored the forecasts and tried to decide when to leave. But the Miami-based NHC stressed it remained "a life-threatening situation" due to the risks of storm surge around coastal areas.
Little change in strength is expected before the center reaches the coast, with weakening expected after the center moves inland. One such tool helping hurricane-watchers keep track of Florence is the appropriately-named Hurricane Tracker app.
Authorities are interviewing 30 witnesses and processing multiple crime scenes to piece together what led up to the violence. Youngblood said he would consider it a mass shooting, saying that the string of shootings were "certainly" connected.
Stewart drained all four of her three-point attempts in the first half to build Seattle's insurmountable lead. Stewart was the league MVP and was selected the Finals MVP after averaging 25.6 points in the three games.
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