Storm could slow down, pound Southeastern NC

Fierce winds and massive waves are expected to lash the coasts of North and SC and Virginia even before Florence makes landfall on Friday, and its rains will take a heavy toll for kilometres inland, the National Hurricane Center in Miami warned on Tuesday.

Businesses and homes in the storm's path were boarded up and thousands of people had moved to emergency shelters, officials said, urging anyone who remained near the coast to flee.

If maps of Florence's trajectory are correct, it will become the most powerful storm to strike the Carolinas in almost three decades.

Isaac, a weakening Category 1 hurricane, is much farther south, and is facing the same winds that threatened to rip Hurricane Florence apart.

Speaking during a visit to Moscow less than an hour after the hurricane made landfall in North Carolina, Perry says "we've done this many times before".

Helene - 620 miles west of the Cape Verde islands off the African coast - had winds up to 110 miles per hour, and was expected to continue moving west-northwest for several more days, the NHC said. With little wind shear to pull the storm apart, hurricane-strength winds have been expanding to 40 miles (64 kilometres) from the eye of the storm, and tropical-storm-force winds 150 miles from the centre.

Isolated tornadoes are also possible Thursday and Friday.

"Florence is expected to produce total rainfall accumulations of 15 to 20 inches with isolated maximum to 30 inches near Florence's track over portions of North Carolina, Virginia, and northern SC through Saturday", says the National Hurricane Center.

High winds and heavy rains will also down trees and bring other destruction to areas in its path, the hurricane center said. "The threat will be inland, so I'm afraid, based on my experience at FEMA, that the public is probably not as prepared as everybody would like", said Craig Fugate, former director of the Federal Emergency Management Agency.

"It was located farther north in the Atlantic than any other storm to ever hit the Carolinas, so what we're forecasting is unprecedented".

"As I tweeted with Harvey last year.it is important to understand the potential one-two punch from Hurricane Florence", University of Georgia meteorologist Marshall Shepherd said.

Hurricane Florence is expected to make landfall in the Tar Heel State on Friday.

The evacuation is said to affect one out of every five South Carolinians, representing around a million residents.

Pan and Phillips point out that even with losses exceeding $140 billion past year, the insurance industry remains well capitalized.

Sailors cast off mooring lines to the Command hospital ship USNS Comfort as the ship evacuates Naval Station Norfolk in preparation for Hurricane Florence in Norfolk, Virginia, U.S., September 11, 2018.

"We're in for a real episode here", the governor said. Tropical storm conditions could hit those areas by early Thursday, forecasters say. Unfortunately, the forecast is for the storm to stall out and drop a ton of rain in the Carolinas. "It's still a very powerful, major storm that we have to take seriously". Even normal water is warm enough for a storm to form there, but this adds to the storm's fuel and its rainfall.

Power companies warned residents may be without power for days or weeks.

The decision brings the total to three games involving ranked teams that won't be played this weekend due to the Category 4 storm.

  • Joe Gonzales