Sunday, 18 November, 2018

North Carolina Feels First Bite Of Hurricane Florence

Bracing for Hurricane Florence | Don't Miss This Hurricane Florence's winds and rain begin lashing US Carolinas coast
Derrick Tucker | 18 September, 2018, 03:21

Hurricane Florence made landfall in North Carolina early Friday, with the massive storm bringing heavy winds, drenching rain and catastrophic flooding to a large swath of the Carolina coast.

Tropical storm-force winds of at least 39 miles per hour (63 kph) extended outward up to 195 miles (315 km) from its center and were due to begin raking North Carolina's Outer Banks barrier islands around 8 a.m. (1200 GMT) before stretching over low-lying areas reaching from Georgia north into Virginia. But forecasters warned that the widening storm - and its likelihood of lingering around the coast day after day - will bring seawater surging onto land and torrential downpours. Parts of eastern North Carolina and SC could see up to 20 inches of rain, in addition to storm surge.

As of 10am Thursday (local time), Florence's top winds were 177km/h, and it was marching northwest at16km/h, about 257km east-southeast of Wilmington, North Carolina, and 329km east-southeast of Myrtle Beach, South Carolina.

The forecast calls for as much as 40 inches (102 centimetres) of rain over seven days along the coast, with the deluge continuing even as the centre of the storm pushes its way over the Appalachian Mountains.

The NHC said in their 11 p.m. advisory that Florence is expected to move inland across extreme southeastern North Carolina and extreme eastern Southern Carolina on Friday and Saturday.

About 10 million people live in the path of the slow-moving storm and more than 1 million had been ordered to evacuate the coasts of the Carolinas and Virginia, jamming westbound roads and highways for miles.

To put things in perspective, any storm surge taller than 12 feet is "life-threatening", National Hurricane Center Director Ken Graham said.

The center said that a gauge in Emerald Isle, North Carolina, recently reported 6.3 feet (1.92 meters) of inundation.

Bracing for Hurricane Florence | Don't Miss This

More than 20,000 residents have packed into North Carolina emergency shelters, and officials have told those still in the storm's path to stay in place.

The NHC notes that amount of rainfall would "produce catastrophic flash flooding and prolonged significant river flooding". American, Delta, Southwest, United, and others will likely be canceling hundred more flights through the weekend. "We just want prayers from everyone".

It's unclear exactly how many people fled ahead of the storm, but more than 1.7 million people in the Carolinas and Virginia were warned to clear out.

The full impact of storm surge on the coast will depend on whether the storm's arrival coincides with high tide.

"The global models suggest that this shear will relax today while Florence moves over warm waters, however, given the current storm structure, little overall change in strength is anticipated as Florence approaches the coast".

"The President offered his support and reiterated the federal government's willingness to help with whatever is needed", Mrs. Sanders said in a statement to White House pool reporters. Tropical storm force winds and hurricane force winds could last for a duration of hours. Millions of people are expected to lose power and it could take weeks to resolve the outages.

While Montreal remains warm and humid, cold air has filtered into western Canada, with the first snowflakes of the season across northern Alberta and B.C. At the same time, no less than 5 tropical systems are in the Atlantic basin, including powerful hurricane Florence.

"I'm going to get killed on the road, '" Bradley said. Both North Carolina and SC are updating their lists of emergency shelters for people caught by the storm.

Met Eireann 'to monitor situation' as Storm Helene approaches
Spanish moss waved in the trees as the winds picked up in Wilmington, and floating docks bounced atop swells at Morehead City. Rain projections also increased, with some locations along the North Carolina coast now expected to get up to 40 inches.

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Although Florence was still days from arrival, authorities took extraordinary measures to move people out of harm's way. Henry McMaster. "A lot of local people are staying", she said of the island, which is reachable only by ferry or plane.

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