5 important things to know about Hurricane Florence
- Author: Terrell Bush Sep 13, 2018,
Sep 13, 2018, 1:27
Taking dead aim at the Carolinas, Storm Florence is likely to bring "life-threatening, catastrophic flash flooding and significant river flooding" when it sweeps in on Thursday and Friday, the National Weather Service (NWS) said.
Although Florence was still days from arrival, authorities took extraordinary measures to move people out of harm's way.
More than 5.4 million people live in areas under hurricane warnings or watches on the US East Coast, according to the NWS, and another four million people were under a tropical storm watch.
"Storm surge has the highest potential to kill the most amount of people", FEMA Administrator Brock Long said.
While a man who gave his name as Joe, a contractor from Carolina, admitted he was "scared" but said he had survived storms before and was determined to make it through this one.
"This is not a storm that people need to ride out", Cooper told reporters. Some 7,000 guard members are ready to mobilize in North Carolina, while 1,100 will be activated in SC.
Schools in southeastern North Carolina were closed on Tuesday and will not reopen until Monday.
Coastal residents fleeing a potentially devastating blow from Hurricane Florence encountered empty gasoline pumps and depleted store shelves as the monster storm neared the Carolina coast with 130 miles per hour winds and drenching rain that could last for days.
He cited forecasts showing Florence was likely to stall over North Carolina, "bringing days and days of rain". Current forecasts call for Florence to be at least a Category 3 storm when it arrives at the Carolinas.
"A lot of our storefronts are boarded up", said Lynn Davis, town manager for Belhaven which sits at sea level in northeastern North Carolina.
Duke Energy Corp expected between 25 percent and 75 percent of its 4 million customers would lose power in the Carolinas.
As it nears the coast, the storm's forward motion will slow to a crawl, but the winds and rain will continue full-strength.
Stronger, rainier, and more damaging hurricanes have always been predicted as a effect of climate change.
On Tuesday evening, the National Hurricane Center issues storm surge warnings for the areas around the Outer Banks in North Carolina and the South Santee River in SC.
The hurricane could inundate low-lying islands off the coast of North Carolina, like the Outer Banks and other barrier islands, according to the NHC. Many gasoline stations were running low on fuel.
Coastal North Carolina could see 20 to 30 inches as well. "What is flooding going to do to our home, our city?" He said the government is prepared for the storm.
"Where alse can we go?"
"Get to a safe place now or by Thursday morning", he said.