Hurricane Florence has weakened but will still be devastating

Hurricane Florence has weakened but will still be devastating

U.S. Southeast power companies said more than 188,000 homes and businesses in North Carolina and SC were without power early Friday as Hurricane Florence caused a deluge ahead of its landfall later in the day.

"Life-threatening storm surge, heavy rainfall, and damaging wind will cover a large area regardless of exactly where the center of Florence moves", Hurricane Center forecasters said.

Packing 105 miles per hour wind, Florence is still expected to make landfall early Friday near Wilmington, N.C. It is expected to slowly move west through central SC by Sunday morning. The Outer Banks are experiencing wind gusts over 30 miles per hour and rain from the outermost bands has begun to fall in coastal areas of both North and SC.

In North Carolina, Florence is expected to dump up to 40 inches of rain and storm surge will be high.

More than 1.7 million people in the Carolinas and Virginia were warned to evacuate over the past few days, and the homes of about 10 million were under watches or warnings for the hurricane or tropical storm conditions. One emergency official said it will be a "Mike Tyson punch" to the area.

Members of law enforcement work with the National Guard to direct traffic onto US Highway 501 as Hurricane Florence approaches the US east coast.

NC 12 early Thursday, as waves generated by Hurricane Florence covered the highway with sand and surf. Some roads were already impassable in the Outer Banks of North Carolina.

Jet Blue has canceled all of its flights today out of Raleigh-Durham International Airport. Some may say that it's not a big deal if he conflates Hurricane Florence, but the real danger comes next time a monster storm is upon us and Trump claims it is the "biggest ever" when it really is, and people won't believe him.

Officials in several states have declared states of emergency, including in the Carolinas, Georgia, Virginia and Maryland, where coastal areas are still recovering from summer storms.

The Weather Channel Goes All In With Apocalyptic Hurricane Florence Graphics
The agency is also warning people in the evacuation areas to leave stating that "This is not going to be a glancing blow". Wilmington , North Carolina, just north of where Florence appeared headed for shore, grew empty and quiet on Wednesday.

Cooper and South Carolina Gov. Henry McMaster told more than 1 million people who were directed to leave that if they don't evacuate, no one will come to save them.

Where is Hurricane Florence now?

Duke Energy Co. said Florence could knock out electricity to three-quarters of its 4 million customers in the Carolinas, and outages could last for weeks. Unsure of what they might find when they return home, the couple went shopping for a recreational vehicle. "We just need to figure out how to make it through".

Florence's weakening as it neared the coast created tension between some who left home and authorities who anxious that the storm could still be deadly.

As Florence roars ashore, it will bring devastating storm surge, potentially pushing water inland up to a story high.

"We hope to have something left when we get home", she said.

Storm surge warnings, hurricane warnings, and tropical storm warnings are in effect along the coast of the Carolinas.

"However, the predictability of such an event is too low to explicitly show in the forecast at this point", the NHC wrote in its 5 a.m. advisory.

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