Wednesday, 21 November, 2018

Hurricane Florence Zeroes In On Carolinas, Bringing 130 MPH Winds

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Ellis Copeland | 15 September, 2018, 20:00

"This will likely be the storm of a lifetime for portions of the Carolina coast", the National Weather Service spokesperson in Wilmington, North Carolina said Tuesday night, according to ABC News. While many coastal residents heeded mandatory evacuation orders, others boarded up homes and businesses and chose to courageous the storm, which is forecast to trigger severe flash flooding as it dumps as many as three feet (almost a meter) of rain in some areas.

Expected to gather force later Tuesday, Florence may cause "life-threatening" storm surge in coastal parts of North and SC, the National Hurricane Center said in an advisory Tuesday.

We'll keep you updated on this system in the coming days.

Florence is forecast to dump up to three feet (almost a meter) of rain in some areas.

The threat of storm surges loom for areas in the path of the storm, meaning life-threatening inundation from rising water moving inland is possible in the next 36 hours.

President Donald Trump has declared states of emergency for North and SC and Virginia, which frees up the way for federal aid.

Jeff Byard of the US Federal Emergency Management Agency said it was imperative locals heed the evacuation warnings. The Democrat says elements of the unit will depart as early as Wednesday afternoon to offer assistance along coastal areas of North Carolina, South Carolina and Virginia.

It is estimated that the wind speed in the eye of the hurricane reaches more than 200 kilometers per hour. In South Carolina, close to the Georgia line, Beaufort County emergency chief Neil Baxley told residents they need to prepare again for the worst just in case.

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"We'll handle it. We're ready, we're able, we've got the finest people I think anywhere in the world". Workers are being brought in from the Midwest and Florida to help in the storm's aftermath, it said.

Byard, the FEMA official, said "this storm is not going to be a glancing blow".

Tens of thousands of homes and businesses could be flooded in North Carolina alone, Governor Cooper warned. As of now, Florence is due to make landfall very early Friday morning, somewhere in the Carolinas.

Florence is predicted to turn more toward the northwest through Thursday - but then is expected to head more west-northwest and stall a bit over the Carolinas. North and SC and Virginia declared emergencies earlier in the week.

A tropical storm watch is in effect for north of the North Carolina/Virginia border to Cape Charles Light, VA, and for Chesapeake Bay south of New Point Comfort.

Michael Kennedy, an engineer at Boeing, said he planned to leave for his parents' home in Atlanta, Georgia. "Everyone was sold out", she said.

On Wednesday, McMaster said that emergency lane reversals - using all lanes of I-26 out of Charleston and Highway 501 near Myrtle Beach for westbound traffic - will cease on Thursday, two days after the measure was instituted.

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