Published: Sun, September 16, 2018
Sci-tech | By Carrie Guzman

Hurricane Florence Shifts South as Carolinas Hunker Down

Hurricane Florence Shifts South as Carolinas Hunker Down

NASA astronaut Ricky Arnold also captured some incredible images of the storm from the windows of the space station.

The latest projections of Florence, now a Category 4 storm, show it shifting south putting Georgia in its possible path.

Hurricane Florence is still well off the coast of the United States, approximately 435 miles southeast of Wilmington, North Carolina, and is moving northwest at 16 mph.

More than 750,000 homes in North Carolina, South Carolina and Virginia are at potential risk of storm surge damage from Florence, data analytics firm CoreLogic said Monday.

US President Donald Trump on Twitter warned of the storm's dangers and praised his administration's handling of past hurricanes, rejecting criticism for its response to Hurricane Maria a year ago in Puerto Rico.

Florence continues to grow in size and strength, now poised to become the strongest hurricane in nearly 30 years to hit the Carolinas as more than 1 million people began fleeing the USA coastline.

Deal asked all Georgians to join him in "praying for the safety of our people and all those in the path of Hurricane Florence".

But the National Hurricane Center said Wednesday evening that the storm is expected to bring life-threatening storm surge and rainfall to the Carolinas as it approaches the coast Thursday and Friday.

Hurricane Florence has been downgraded to a Category 2 storm but it is still considered an extremely unsafe and life-threatening storm.

Hurricane Florence downgraded to Category 1 storm
Rain begins to fall as the outer bands of Hurricane Florence make landfall in Myrtle Beach, South Carolina on September 13, 2018. Since issuing a mandatory evacuation order Wednesday, nearly all of the more than 2500 residents left the island.

"Hurricane-force winds extend outward up to 70 miles (110 km) from the center and tropical-storm-force winds extend outward up to 175 miles (280 km)".

As many as 1.7 million people have been ordered to evacuate in South Carolina, North Carolina and Virginia.

Old Dominion's football game at Charlotte (North Carolina) has been moved up to Thursday because of Hurricane Florence.

Terrifying as the situation is (I am regularly checking on my folks, who abandoned Charleston for the highlands of North Carolina), there is a silver lining. This change has major implications on the storm's impact, as a stalled hurricane would bring a prolonged period of hurricane force winds and pounding surf to the coastline along with extremely heavy rain with widespread amounts of 10-20 inches and localized amounts upwards of 40 inches possible, the weather forecaster said.

Florence's predicted path as of Wednesday had it making landfall on the SC coast, just south of North Carolina.

Officials in New Hanover County, which includes Wilmington, have stockpiled enough food and water for 60,000 people for four days, along with more than 28,000 tarps.

"These enormous waves are produced by being trapped along with very strong winds moving in the same direction [of] the storm's motion", the agency said.

A long stretch of the US Eastern Seaboard remained vulnerable to hurricane and tropical storm conditions, from Georgia north through the Carolinas into Virginia.

Even with some weakening that is predicted just before it makes landfall, the storm "is expected to remain a unsafe major hurricane as it approaches the coastline", the hurricane center said.

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