Published: Fri, September 14, 2018
Research | By Raquel Erickson

Carolina Braces for Florence Storm Surge

Carolina Braces for Florence Storm Surge

The swirl of red, yellow and green along the East Coast of the United States is Florence, a massive storm whose severity has been downgraded to Category 1 - but still packs high winds, torrential rain and storm surge. More than one million people had been ordered to evacuate the coasts of North and SC and Virginia and thousands moved to emergency shelters, officials said.

Forecasters said conditions will deteriorate as the storm pushes ashore early Friday near the North Carolina-South Carolina line and makes its way slowly inland.

Hurricane Florence's sustained wind speeds have lessened slightly to 105 miles per hour, but the storm is already bringing surges and tropical storm winds to the North Carolina shore, the National Hurricane Center said in an 11 a.m. briefing.

Even so, many residents of Myrtle Beach proudly recalled how they had weathered a number of storms in the past and were confident they could ride out Florence too.

In Hampton Roads, a tropical storm warning is in effect from Poquoson to the Virginia-North Carolina border, including the lower James and York rivers. "I will enjoy the quiet", he said.

Florence could do more than $170bn (£130bn) of damage and affect almost 759,000 homes and businesses, says analytics firm CoreLogic.

A category one hurricane is expected to produce "very risky winds" which "will produce some damage".

Panovich: The other interesting thing is in Charlotte our biggest impacts might be felt more Friday night into Saturday, and we will certainly see some wind on Friday but I think the rain may be kind of scattered about on Friday and the heavy stuff doesn't really move in until Saturday.


The police chief of a barrier island in Florence's bulls'-eye said he was asking for next-of-kin contact information from the few residents who refused to leave.

"This is a horrific nightmare storm from a meteorological perspective", University of Georgia meteorology professor Marshall Shepherd said.

NASA itself uploaded a video of Hurricane Florence that was taken by the high-definition camera located outside the International Space Station. It's now a Category 2.

The outer bands of Hurricane Florence have reached Wilmington, with weather officials saying the storm will bring unprecedented rain to the region. But as it neared the coast on September 13, it weakened to a Category 2. So as you can see, they're forecasting a major landfalling storm - Category 3 or 4 storm at landfall.

The storm will slow down because of pushback from a trough - an extended area of low atmospheric pressure - now over Texas, Stacy Stewart, an NHC senior hurricane specialist, said in the update. Water kills more people in hurricanes than wind does.

Florence is expected to start causing havoc over North and SC today.

Atlantic Beach was receiving winds of roughly 65-75 miles per hour as of 3:30 p.m. Thursday, according to a Fox News report.

To the east of that system is Tropical Storm Helene, which is blowing stronger with maximum winds at approximately 100 km/h.

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