Weaker Hurricane Florence still extremely unsafe for Southeastern coast

Mindy Sparks
September 13, 2018

The centre of Florence, a Category 2 hurricane, will approach the coasts of North and SC today, the NHC said, adding that it was expected to weaken after it moved inland.

By the time the storm leaves the region, forecasters expect it to drop 50 to 75 centimeters (19-30 inches) of rain in coastal areas, with some parts capable of receiving up to 100 centimeters (40 inches). The storm's size and area affected by hazardous winds have actually expanded, and the threat from storm and rain-induced flooding "have not changed" tweeted Rick Knabb, The Weather Channel's tropical weather expert and former Hurricane Center director.

Heavy rains were forecast to extend into the Appalachians, affecting parts of Alabama, Tennessee, Kentucky and West Virginia.

For many of those under evacuation orders, getting out of harm's way has proved difficult, as airlines canceled flights and motorists had a hard time finding gas.

Cooper and his SC counterpart, Henry McMaster, told the more than 1 million people who have been directed to leave that if they don't do so, they are on their own.

As of 2 p.m. EDT, Florence was centered about 110 miles east-southeast of Wilmington, North Carolina, and 165 miles east of Myrtle Beach, South Carolina, moving at 10 mph. And newly formed Subtropical Storm Joyce is not expected to threaten land soon.

States up and down the East Coast have a great potential for severe weather.

The coastal surge from Florence could leave the eastern tip of North Carolina under more than 9 feet (2.75 meters) of water in spots, projections showed.

Landfall is expected late Thursday or early Friday, and the National Hurricane Center fears the storm "will slow considerably or stall, leading to a prolonged and exceptionally heavy and unsafe rainfall event Friday-Sunday".

The hurricane has already sparked mass evacuation in Wilmington, North Carolina, all the way up to the Eastern Shore of Virginia.

A hurricane watch is in effect for Edisto Beach, SC, to South Santee River, SC. Florence has weakened a bit over 24 hours, but it's also grown even larger - and it will likely dump torrential rain over North and SC through Monday.

The term "storm surge" refers to rising seas that are whipped up by a storm.

Dominion, which supplies electricity in Virginia and North Carolina, is warning customers in both states to prepare for a multi-day storm that could bring high winds, flooding and widespread power outages. "The combination of a unsafe storm surge and the tide will cause normally dry areas near the coast to be flooded by rising waters moving inland from the shoreline". However, the surge is expected to be accompanied by large and destructive waves, regardless of when the storm arrives.

Hurricane Florence, now a Category 2 storm, is slowly approaching the USA coast, and the storm's massive fury is on full display in video footage taken from the International Space Station. Slower storms mean more rainfall over a smaller area.

Torrential rains brought about significant flooding in some areas, with the rains expected to continue over Oahu through Thursday.

Florence is one of four named storms in the Atlantic. Puerto Rico and the Virgin Islands face possible isolated amounts of 3 inches.

The biggest surge should occur just to the north of where the eye of the storm comes ashore, which the Hurricane Center projects in southeastern North Carolina. It is expected to turn away from the U.S.

Another disturbance is swirling around in the Gulf of Mexico.

Florence is the most unsafe of three tropical systems in the Atlantic.

Other reports by Iphone Fresh

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