Florence strengthens, over 1 5 million ordered to flee

Florence strengthens, over 1 5 million ordered to flee

Hurricane Florence as seen from the International Space Station on Monday, Sept. 10, 2018. He emphasized these numbers are conservative estimates; totals could be higher depending on the track of the storm and if it stalls. The storm is expected to make landfall early Friday morning near Wilmington, North Carolina.

At 11pm local time on Tuesday (4am BST Wednesday) the "monster" storm was centred 670 miles southeast of Cape Fear, North Carolina, moving at 17 mph.

James City County has declared a state of emergency in anticipation of effects from Hurricane Florence. "He also told us that he has requested, activated 200 National Guards with thousands more available should that be necessary". Tropical-storm-force winds extend outward up to 105 miles from the center. Tropical storms are defined as those of at least 39 miles per hour.

As Hurricane Florence steadily makes its way toward the southeastern part of the USA, meteorologists have issued repeated warnings of expected rainfall, flash flooding, high-intensity winds and even mudslides. Florence is now heading for ocean water with surface temperatures of around 85 degrees, meaning it will likely strengthen on its way to the East Coast.

The hurricane is expected to dump heavy rain throughout the region and FEMA officials said it's not just a coastal problem.

"Florence is intensifying", said North Carolina's Governor Roy Cooper, adding: "This storm is strong, and its gettings stronger".

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Hurricane Isaac is holding steady in strength over the Atlantic.

Forecasters said it was too soon to determine the exact timing, location and magnitude of storm surges and flooding Florence will cause.

Large swells generated by Florence are already affecting Bermuda and portions of the East Coast and will continue this week, the hurricane center said.

At least 25 million residents are at risk from the storm and experts predict its current path could cause up to $170 billion worth of damage, hit up to 759,000 homes and businesses and become the costliest to ever hit the U.S.

To put things in perspective, any storm surge taller than 12 feet is "life-threatening", National Hurricane Center Director Ken Graham said.

The storm is now expected to make landfall in the lower Outer Banks of North Carolina early Friday morning or possibly stay in the ocean before making a shift to the left toward SC.

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