For meteorologists, Florence is a horrific nightmare storm

Mindy Sparks
September 16, 2018

Recent tracking maps show Florence stalking near the coast line, increasing the chances of flooding across four states.

Tesh, who works in information technology for UNC-Wilmington, said she and her husband have been ferrying valuables to her parents' house on the mainland in Wilmington, where they planned to ride out the storm.

"If you're going to leave - and you should leave - if you have not left these evacuation zones, you should leave now because time is running out", McMaster said. The National Hurricane Center, which called these levels "catastrophic", has created a augmented reality tool that helps visualize how severe the storm surge could be.

Director Ken Graham says there is nothing "minor" about this hurricane.

Most comprehensive travel insurance policies include cancelation coverage in the event of a hurricane or tropical storm.

A fast-moving hurricane can be deadly, but a hurricane that stalls-meaning that it spends more time pounding a particular area with strong winds and heavy rain-can be even worse.

But forecasters warned that the widening storm - and the likelihood of it lingering around the coast for days - would bring seawater surging on to land and torrential downpours.

Florence has it all: Hot ocean temperatures that fuel hurricanes.

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.

Winds and rain were arriving later in SC, and a few people were still walking on the sand at Myrtle Beach while North Carolina was getting pounded. The storm's overall movement has slowed to 10 miles per hour.

While the storm's winds have weakened since Wednesday, making it now a Category 2 storm, its range has grown and its damaging effects are now expected to be felt far inland beyond North Carolina and SC, which will be hit hardest.

As Florence drew near, President Donald Trump tweeted that FEMA and first responders are "supplied and ready", and he disputed the official conclusion that almost 3,000 people died in Puerto Rico, claiming the figure was a Democratic plot to make him look bad.

Risk modelling company RMS noted that its slowdown will be very significant to the damage it causes and the losses it generates and acknowledges that this differs from the original predictions of its track. "Today the threat becomes a reality".

Those who live more inland could experience flash flooding, potential tornadoes and mudslides, forecasters said.

"I don't care if this goes down to a Category 1", said CNN meteorologist Chad Myers.

"This is a horrific nightmare storm from a meteorological perspective", University of Georgia meteorology professor Marshall Shepherd said.

"We expected it to strengthen and then as it approached the coast to weaken somewhat", Abrams says.

Other reports by Iphone Fresh

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