Hurricane Florence: Travel Begins To Snarl As Storm Closes In

Mindy Sparks
September 13, 2018

"It's just not anywhere near a level of Maria", forecaster Eric Blake said.

Boarding up his home in Myrtle Beach, South Carolina, Chris Pennington watched the forecasts and tried to decide when to leave. "We're kind of at the mercy of the storm".

"It's just extremely busy and it's even busier than past year and all at once", Blake said.

The Knightdale High shelter is also open to Carteret County residents, according to television station WITN.

Boeing evacuated several new 787-10 Dreamliner jets from its factory in North Charleston, South Carolina, to protect them from the storm. "It's a nasty interplay that makes it very hard".

The deadly storm has been downgraded to a Category 2 hurricane, but it is still expected to result in catastrophic flash floods, life-threatening storm surges, tropical storm-force winds and even tornadoes.

There are generally three components to a hurricane; strong winds, storm surge and heavy rain.

"We are completely ready for hurricane Florence, as the storm gets even larger and more powerful". Some 3,000 people died in the aftermath of that storm.

The storm is expected to affect airports in Georgia and Virginia. He compares Hurricane Florence with Hurricane Isabel, which hit the Virginia and North Carolina area at a similar strength in 2003, leaving about a million people without power and Hatteras Island battered. Areas from Cape Fear to Cape Lookout face a potential 9 to 13 feet of storm surge, the National Hurricane Center warns, on top of the normal tides. Beside inundating the coast with wind-driven storm, Florence could dump 20 to 30 inches (51-76 cm) of rain, with up to 40 inches in parts of North Carolina, the National Hurricane Center predicts.

Hurricane Florence is at the doorstep of North and SC, and she's not going away anytime soon. Storm winds could intensify through the day and tonight, but weaken slightly Thursday as it nears the coast.

Outside this zone of destructive winds, damaging winds are still likely, even some distance inland from the coast, which would lead to minor structural damage, downed trees and widespread power outages. Officials say people refusing to evacuate could end up alone, drenched and in the dark, as rescue crews won't go out to help in winds above 80 km/h.

Trucks are rushing into the region to restock store shelves, but Peggy Dorf, a freight and logistics market analyst for DAT Solutions, says they won't be for much longer.

A smaller hurricane dubbed Isaac is reportedly heading for the Caribbean, while Hurricane Helene - now also in the Atlantic - is forecast to track towards the UK.

Mr Byard told Thursday morning's news conference that while Florence's wind speed had dipped, its hurricane-force wind field had expanded and total rainfall predictions were unchanged. While early on Wednesday the odds of it forming dropped, by afternoon forecasters had again increased the chance to 70 percent over two days.

"It will be historic", Baker said of the rain from Florence. A hurricane hunter plane is scheduled to investigate the system Thursday.

Other reports by Iphone Fresh

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