More than 400k evacuate SC as Florence approaches

Christopher Davidson
September 16, 2018

Adding to concerns, forecasters warned the larger and slow-moving storm could linger for days around the coast, leaving many without power and supplies.

Additionally, the National Hurricane Center has not changed its forecast for the storm surge - with up to 13 feet possible - or rainfall - with up to 40 inches dumped in some spots. President Donald Trump said there was nothing to fear because his administration did such good work responding to last year's storms - including Hurricane Maria, which killed 3,000 people in Puerto Rico. She hopes they'll stay inside once the winds, rain and floods arrive.

He urged people in the coastal Carolinas and living near inland rivers to evacuate.

"Your time is running out", he said. "Hurricane-force winds extend outward up to 80 miles (130 km) from the centre and tropical-storm-force winds extend outward up to 195 miles (315 km)".

Florence is forecast to move near or over the coast of southern North Carolina and northeastern SC in the hurricane warning area Thursday night and Friday.

A fast-moving hurricane can be deadly, but a hurricane that stalls-meaning that it spends more time pounding a particular area with strong winds and heavy rain-can be even worse. That same area experienced risky flooding after Hurricane Matthew in 2016. The firm estimated 759,000 homes and businesses could be damaged.

How the Waffle House is used to determine a hurricane’s fury
Waffle House spokesman Pat Warner said it's flattering that the company has such a high profile in the eyes of FEMA. The sooner restaurants, grocery stores, and banks re-open - the sooner the local economy and recovery restart.

The police chief of a barrier island in the bull's-eye of Hurricane Florence is warning any stragglers who refused to evacuate that they are making a risky choice. Philippines starts massive evacuations as huge typhoon nears Philippine authorities began evacuating thousands of people on Thursday from the path of the most powerful typhoon this year, closing schools, readying bulldozers for landslides and placing rescuers and troops on full alert in the country's north.

But North Carolina Gov. Roy Cooper warned: "Don't relax, don't get complacent". "Several million will probably lose power". More than 1.7 million people in the Carolinas and Virginia were warned to clear out. That's comparable to Hurricane Harvey, which according to some weather stations, dropped more than four feet of rain on areas of southeastern Texas.

"I'm lucky to be here today, but wherever they're going to send me I'm going".

As Florence drew near, President Donald Trump tweeted that FEMA and first responders are "supplied and ready", and he disputed the official conclusion that almost 3,000 people died in Puerto Rico, claiming the figure was a Democratic plot to make him look bad.

Anxious about how the government will respond to Hurricane Florence's devastation?

"Just because you're not on the coast doesn't mean you won't get some big impact", Graham said. "If I can't get back in a week, after a while they might turn on each other or trash the place".

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