Hurricane Florence Is Generating 83-Foot Waves in the Atlantic

Three North Carolina Army National Guard Black Hawk helicopters land as part of storm preparation for Hurricane Florence at

The NHC is forecasting Florence to have winds of 115 miles per hour "near the coast" which would make it a Category 3 storm - considered major.

Florence will then recurve across the western Carolinas and the central Appalachian Mountains early next week.

The only route off North Carolina's Hatteras Island closed Thursday as Hurricane Florence approached.

Southeastern coastal North Carolina into far northeastern SC...20 to 30 inches, isolated 40 inches.

"Tropical storm conditions are expected to spread inland across the remainder of the warning area through Saturday", the NHC said.

In Virginia, where about 245,000 residents were ordered to evacuate low-lying areas, officials urged people to remain away from home despite forecast changes showing Florences path largely missing the state.

On Wednesday morning, Florence was extending hurricane-force winds outward up to 70 miles from its center, with tropical-storm-force winds up to 175 miles outward.

Residents scrambled to flee as the category four storm, with winds of 225kmh, approached.

This rainfall will produce catastrophic flash flooding and prolonged significant river flooding.

While wind speeds dropped Thursday, forecasters reminded people that what makes Florence extremely unsafe are the potentially deadly storm surges, the expected mammoth coastal flooding and historic rainfall.

A view of Hurricane Florence is shown churning in the Atlantic Ocean in a west north-westerly direction heading for the east

About 1.7 million people have already been told to leave their homes in the latter three states, but some who thought they were safely out of the path of the storm are now desperately working to board up their homes and businesses before its arrival.

A state of emergency has also been declared in Maryland, North Carolina, South Carolina, Virginia and Washington.

Earlier this week, President Trump approved emergency declarations for South Carolina, North Carolina, and Virginia.

"Strength, track, and forward speed of Florence will be the major players in determining the scope and amount of rainfall and correspondingly the severity of inland flooding", according to AccuWeather forecaster Dan Kottlowski on September 12.

In a statement, the SCANA subsidiary predicted that the storm would "bring unsafe winds and the potential for heavy rain and flooding across our service territory, which could result in significant power outages for our customers".

A Hurricane Watch is in effect for... In Hurricane Sandy in 2012, storm surge-induced flooding measured as high as 9 feet above ground in parts of NY and New Jersey, leading to billions of dollars in damages.

About 10 million people are in the sights of the storm as it zeroes in on the Southeastern coast.

Remainder of SC and North Carolina into southwest Virginia...6 to 12 inches, isolated 15 inches. Tropical Storm Olivia has made landfall in the Hawaiian islands, the Philippines are bracing for the powerful typhoon Mangkhut, and Tropical Storm Isaac is nearing the Leeward Islands. Adding to the storm stress is uncertainty about where exactly Florence will make landfall, after a shift in its track put more of the Southeast in danger. The National Weather Service (NWS) warns that the storm will bring a massive storm surge, strong winds, and life-threatening flooding potential in inland areas. However, the surge is expected to be accompanied by large and destructive waves, regardless of when the storm arrives. The Appalachians could see 3 to 6 inches of rain, with isolated areas of 12 inches.

It's the slow movement that could result in what the National Weather Service for Newport and Morehead City, North Carolina called possible "historical rainfall amounts" with "UNPRECEDENTED flooding". And newly formed Subtropical Storm Joyce is not expected to threaten land soon.

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