Carolina coast battening down, boarding up as hurricane nears

Carolina coast battening down, boarding up as hurricane nears

Florence, a powerful Category 4 hurricane, is expected to make landfall in the Carolinas late Thursday or early Friday but heavy rainfall is expected to hit Georgia to the south.

Hurricane Florence, growing in size despite its weakening winds on Wednesday, crept closer to the U.S. East Coast as disaster mobilizations expanded south from the Carolinas into Georgia to counter the deadly threat of high seas and floods.

Updated NHC forecasts showed the storm lingering near the coast, bringing days of heavy rains that could bring intense inland flooding from SC to Virginia.

Updated NHC forecasts showed the storm lingering near the coast, bringing days of heavy rains that could bring intense inland flooding from SC, where some areas could see as much as 40 inches (1m) of rain, to Virginia.

Some recent reports say that waves as tall as 83 feet have been spotted with the storm, and when the storm makes landfall it will be packing a serious punch.

Governors of those states have already declared states of emergency, as have the governors of Virginia and Maryland.

At 2 a.m., the storm was centered 625 miles (1,005 km) southeast of Cape Fear, North Carolina, moving at 17 mph (28 kph).

- Florence is forecast to stall near the coastline late Thursday night through Saturday morning.

President Donald Trump declared states of emergency for North and SC and Virginia, opening the way for federal aid.

Hurricane Florence is expected to hit the Carolinas hard. From there, people will be transported to open shelters, he said.

Forecasters say the center of Florence will move over the southwestern Atlantic Ocean between Bermuda and the Bahamas on Wednesday, and approach the coast of the Carolinas in the hurricane warning area on Thursday and Friday.

"This is going to be a big hit with storm surge at the coast", he told "Good Morning America" Wednesday.

"This is not a storm that people need to ride out", Cooper told reporters. But earlier this year, the Charleston County School District requested an assessment of its facilities used during hurricanes; it found the shelters should only be used for storms designated a Category 3 or below, the Charleston Post & Courier reported.

The White House said President Donald Trump approved making federal funding available in some affected counties.

"Get out of its way, don't play games with it, it's a big one, maybe as big as they've seen, and tremendous amounts of water", Trump said in a video posted on Twitter. "We're fully prepared - food, medical, everything you can imagine". "It's called Mother Nature. You never know, but we know".

MYRTLE BEACH, S.C. (AP) — Hurricane Florence put a corridor of more than 10 million people in the crosshairs Wednesday as the monster storm closed in on the Carolinas, uncertainty over its projected path spreading worry across a widening swath of the Southeast. "If you are on the coast, there is still time to get out safely". From the comfort of the space station, astronauts can only look on in horror, but if you're in the path of this storm you should do everything you can to either get out or prepare for the worst.

Many grocery stores and pharmacies have been filled this week with people reaching for extra supplies and provisions.

"If they say leave, leave", said Jennifer Forte, who was in Kitty Hawk, North Carolina, on Tuesday and headed toward Greenville.

Cooper, the governor of North Carolina, cautioned that high winds and floodwaters could knock power out "for several days if not longer".

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