Hurricane Florence looms over East Coast — WHAT'S HAPPENING

Christopher Davidson
September 16, 2018

And if Florence weren't enough, other storms out there are threatening people.

The storm's maximum sustained winds were clocked at 120 miles per hour (193 km per hour), down from a peak of 140 mph a day earlier before Florence was downgraded from a Category 4.

A man runs past a mandatory evacuation sign before Hurricane Florence comes ashore in Wrightsville Beach, North Carolina.

The East Coast isn't the only area facing the brunt of a storm.

Florence has it all: Hot ocean temperatures that fuel hurricanes. "We are ready. We're as ready as anybody's ever been".

The president said: "The safety of American people is my absolute highest priority".

President Donald Trump has states of emergency for North and SC along with Virginia.

However, forecasters say the storm's biggest threat is how much rain it is expected to produce.

"This is going to be a Mike Tyson punch to the Carolina coast", said Jeff Byard, associate administrator for response and recovery at the Federal Emergency Management Agency.

He said electric power could be out for weeks.

Severe flooding after Hurricane Florence makes landfall
As he struggled to maintain his balance against the high winds and rain, Seidel says, "This is about as nasty as it's been". Hurricane Florence made landfall Friday in Wrightsville Beach, North Carolina, after stalking the coastline for days.

Duke Energy Corp expected between 25 percent and 75 percent of its 4 million customers would lose power in the Carolinas. Maximum sustained winds are near 35 miles per hour (55 km/h) with higher gusts.

He also said people should remove locator beacons from their boats so the Coast Guard isn't chasing false distress signals if the beacon falls off the boat during the storm. "I encourage Georgians to be prepared for the inland effects of the storm as well as the ensuing storm surge in coastal areas".

In Wilmington, North Carolina, which is one of the areas where Florence may make landfall, NOAA tidal data shows a sea level rise of around 20cm (0.7 feet) since 1930s, meaning the storm surge will be higher and impacts greater than otherwise.

In Wilmington, Solange Iliou Thompson closed down her restaurant, Indochine, because all of her employees had left the city.

"There may be a time during the storm that responders will not be able to go to your emergency due to weather conditions", Lake said. "There's nobody left to work".

She said: "Helene is moving up from the Atlantic towards us".

"Everything is packed", Espinoza said. "This is probably the only exercise I get this week", she said.

Nurse Barbara Mack was using a small shovel to fill sandbags at a public works facility in Charleston, but she saw a silver lining in the hurricane preparations. "If it wasn't for them, I wouldn't have minded staying here". The flooding in southeast North Carolina and northeast SC might be "unprecedented", according to the agency.

In Virginia, 245,000 coastal residents were ordered to evacuate. It is rated as a Category 2 storm on a scale of 1 to 5 and is expected to maintain its strength.

Tropical storm warnings have been issued for Martinique, Dominica, and Guadeloupe.

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