'It's just a heck of a storm,' Florence hurricane hunter says

16 September, 2018, 03:01 | Author: Kelly Sanders
  • Big and vicious: Hurricane Florence closes in on Carolinas

Florence could be only the fourth category four hurricane to impact the eastern seaboard north of Georgia, according to the Weather Channel.

Hurricane Florence intensified rapidly to a category 4 storm Monday with sustained winds of 140 miles per hour., tracking toward the North Carolina coast with an expected landfall as early as Thursday.

Governors in South Carolina, North Carolina and Virginia have declared states of emergency in preparation for Florence.

Tropical-storm-force winds are due to reach the coasts of North and SC on Thursday morning, and hurricane-force winds may be felt around Thursday night, ahead of an anticipated Friday morning landfall. And Virginia's governor ordered a mandatory evacuation for some residents of low-lying coastal areas, while some coastal counties in North Carolina have done the same.

"This is a real hurricane we have coming", South Carolina Gov. Henry McMaster said Monday.

Don't concentrate on the exact forecast track of Hurricane #Florence.

The center of the hurricane was forecast to move between Bermuda and the Bahamas on Tuesday and Wednesday and approach the southeastern coast of the USA on Thursday as a Category 3 storm or higher, according to the hurricane center. SC is one-waying several interstates including I-26 out of Charleston.


A Storm Surge Warning is also in effect for South Santee River South Carolina to Duck North Carolina as well as Albemarle and Pamlico Sounds, including the Neuse and Pamlico Rivers.

The US Navy said it was preparing to send about 30 ships stationed in Virginia out to sea. Hugo was among the most intense, which made landfall in SC as a Category 4 with 140-mph winds. "That's my one and only dealing with a hurricane".

For many people, the challenge could be finding a safe refuge. Home Depot and Lowe's activated emergency response centers to get generators, trash bags and bottled water to stores before and after the storm. Ray Cooper said at a news conference Monday. Schools, state government offices and medical facilities, including nursing homes in those counties, will be evacuated as well, McMaster said. Eastbound lanes of Interstate 26 heading into Charleston and USA 501 heading into Myrtle Beach will be reversed when the order takes effect. Two other storms also are churning in the Atlantic. Its maximum sustained winds have dropped slightly to 110 miles per hour (175 kph).

Florence is about 644 kilometres wide and it's winds have dropped from a peak of 225 km/h to 165 km/h, reducing the hurricane from a terrifying Category 4 to a Category 2.

Jones urged Chatham County residents to continue to monitor Florence and be generally prepared for hurricanes with a hurricane kit, shelter-in-place supplies and an evacuation plan.

"It just kind of hits you in the gut when you see this thing strengthening and know that the forecast is calling for it to come in as such a strong storm", he told CNN on Monday after his third flight.

Lining up behind Florence, Isaac was about 1,150 miles (1,855 kilometers) east of the Windward Islands with top winds of 75 mph (120 kph) early Monday, moving west at 14 mph (22 kph).

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