Watch live streaming video of Hurricane Florence rolling into North Carolina

Watch live streaming video of Hurricane Florence rolling into North Carolina

Hurricane Florence is continuing to push towards a landfall around the North Carolina/South Carolina border, and is beginning to lash the central Atlantic seaboard with damaging winds and storm surge.

Forecasts generally project Florence to make landfall in southeastern North Carolina on Friday as a Category 3 or 4 hurricane.

Adding to concerns, forecasters warned the larger and slow-moving storm could linger for days around the coast, leaving many without power and supplies.

The outer bands of Hurricane Florence reached North Carolina Thursday as officials continued to warn of the damaging nature of the monster Category 2 storm.

It said the additional declaration would bring more federal help with debris removal, search and rescue teams, meals and generators, among other items.

North Carolina Governor Roy Cooper told a news conference, that a "historic storm" would unleash rains and floods that would inundate nearly the entire state. Tropical Storm Olivia has made landfall in the Hawaiian islands, the Philippines are bracing for the powerful typhoon Mangkhut, and Tropical Storm Isaac is nearing the Leeward Islands. "Today the threat becomes a reality".

About 5.25 million people live in areas under hurricane warnings or watches, and 4.9 million live in places covered by tropical storm warnings or watches, the National Weather Service said.

The surge in power outages along the coast is the result of gusts coming off Hurricane Florence and knocking trees into power lines, said Lisa Crawley, a spokeswoman for the co-ops. The storm was moving northwest at 12 miles per hour.

The station reached 70 million viewers a year ago and averaged more than a million viewers during the week Hurricane Irma hit Puerto Rico, the Bahamas and Florida.

Maryland's largest natural gas and electric company, BGE, said it was also preparing for the storm.

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More than 1,200 USA airline flights scheduled for Thursday and Friday have been canceled, according to the flight-tracking service FlightAware. By early afternoon, utilities reported about 12,000 homes and businesses had lost power.

"I'm not going to lie: I'm scared", she said.

Up to 40 inches of rain could fall in North Carolina. That is enough water to fill the Empire State Building almost 40,000 times. Along the coast, fewer homes have flood insurance than five years ago.

Wilmington resident Julie Terrell said she was concerned after walking to breakfast past a row of shops fortified with boards, sandbags and hurricane shutters. "Whether you have a house or not, when the storm comes it will bring everyone together. A storm can come and wipe your house out overnight".

Scientists said it is too soon to say what role, if any, global warming played in the storm.

Heavy surf crashes the dunes at high tide in Nags Head, N.C., on September 13 as Hurricane Florence approaches the coast.

The storm's eye was about 145 miles southeast of Wilmington as of 11 a.m., the briefing said.

"Against my better judgment, due to emotionalism, I evacuated", said Fisher, 74.

Officials in New Hanover County, which includes Wilmington, have stockpiled enough food and water for 60,000 people for four days, along with more than 28,000 tarps. What's more he said, there are the animals themselves: possibly thousands of dead pigs and chickens that could wind up washed into the river, bringing with them further contamination. The latter had to be relocated back to the reserve after the storm. "When I left the Island, AFTER the storm had hit, they had anywhere from 6 to 18 deaths".

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