Published: Thu, September 13, 2018
Sci-tech | By Patricia Wade

Dont play games with it: Florence takes aim at Carolinas

Dont play games with it: Florence takes aim at Carolinas

A National Guardsman directs counterflow traffic traveling west from Myrtle Beach on U.S. 501 as Hurricane Florence approaches the East Coast, Wednesday, September 12, 2018, in Conway, South Carolina.

The News & Observer reports that the storm's path shifted early Wednesday and it is now bearing down on southern North Carolina and northern SC, where it could dump up to 40 inches of rain in places.

The latest storm surge has some areas under over 8 feet of water. A lot of people hearing this are remembering Hurricane Hugo in 1989. The track also shifted somewhat south and west, throwing Georgia into peril as Florence moves inland. Some regions are expected to receive more than 20 inches of rain from the hurricane and its giant knot of storm clouds.

There are generally three components to a hurricane; strong winds, storm surge and heavy rain. That could cause normally dry areas to be flooded by up to 4 meters (13 feet) of water moving inland.

Despite the fact that the hurricane has been downgraded to Category 2, the 80 miles per hour winds and coastal flooding will still cause significant damage throughout the southeast.

However, a Cat 2 storm's wind speed is "extremely risky", according to the National Hurricane Center, capable of ripping trees from the ground, wreaking major roof damage on homes and causing power outages that may last weeks and affect three million households.

PHOTO: Jim Carter and Rob Quinn board up Lagerheads Tavern in Wrightsville Beach, they prepare for Hurricane Florence, Sept. 10, 2018.

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

NASA Releases Footage Of Hurricane Florence And Her 'Mike Tyson Punch'
Yesterday officials in Beaufort County, home to Hilton Head Island, held a news conference and urged people to leave voluntarily. More than 1.5 million people have been told to flee their homes as Hurricane Florence barrels toward The Eastern seaboard.

More than 1 million people are under mandatory evacuations in the Carolinas and Virginia, and about 30 million across the Southeast will be affected if the forecast holds, CNN meteorologist Michael Guy said. "I mean this takes a long time to move through the Carolinas". One emergency official said it will be a "Mike Tyson punch" to the area.

"We'll handle it. We're ready".

Every now and then nature throws out a storm so massive we can only gaze upon it in humbling awe at its fearsome power. "We're fully prepared. Food, medical, everything you can imagine, we are ready".

As Hurricane Florence gets closer to land, the big question is - when and where will its effects be felt? Additionally, tornadoes could arise in southeast North Carolina on Thursday and Friday. At least nine nuclear facilities also lie in the storm's path, including Duke Energy's Brunswick nuclear plant in North Carolina. "The ocean is going to start rising", he said, warning that flooding would occur "within a matter of hours". A tropical storm warning covers the area from north of Duck to the Virgina Tidewater area.

"Do not focus on the wind speed category of #Hurricane #Florence!" the National Hurricane Center said Thursday morning.

"Today is the time to get your preparedness actions complete", he said.

However, all coastal communities are in danger of storm surge, and Florence could bring wind damage and flooding to communities near the Virginia line.

Rainfall will accumulate near 2 feet in North Carolina.

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