Florence barreling closer to coast of Carolinas

Update on Hurricane Florence in the US: Sherwin Bryce-Pease

Map shows probable path of Hurricane Florence.

The hurricane center is forecasting the storm to hover near the coast Saturday with winds of around 80 miles per hour (130 kph) before landfall, but with rainfall in the 20 to 30 inches (50 to 75 centimeter) range and up to 13 feet (nearly 4 meters) of storm surge.

As of 8 a.m. ET, Florence was 530 miles southeast of Cape Fear, N.C., moving west-northwest at 17 mph, the National Hurricane Center says. "Take all necessary actions to protect life and property from rising water and the potential for other risky conditions".

Myrtle Beach's Ocean Boulevard was practically empty at midday on Wednesday, September 12, as the SC town prepared for the arrival of Hurricane Florence. Upon its arrival, the National Hurricane Center projects that Florence could drop anywhere from 20-40 inches of rain along the Carolina coast.

Myrtle Beach is within an area under a hurricane warning that ran from South Santee River, South Carolina, to Duck, North Carolina, at 2pm local time. Landfall could take place Friday or Saturday morning at this point. Even from a distance, Florence is expected to bring more sustained easterly winds to the region.

The overall trend is "exceptionally bad news", said University of Miami hurricane researcher Brian McNoldy, since it "smears a landfall out over hundreds of miles of coastline, most notably the storm surge". So as you can see, they're forecasting a major landfalling storm - Category 3 or 4 storm at landfall.

Trump and officials urged residents in the path of the storm to evacuate before it is too late.

. It is an extremely, dangerous, life-threatening, historic hurricane, ' said North Carolina Gov. Roy Cooper.

"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.

"People do not live and survive to tell the tale about what their experience is like with storm surge", Long said. Executives in North and South Carolina, Virginia, Maryland and the District of Columbia declared emergencies earlier in the week.

Deal's emergency declaration cited potential "changes in the storm's trajectory" as well as an influx of evacuees coming to Georgia from the Carolinas.

Hurricane Florence may now be dipping a bit south and hitting a portion of the Great State of Georgia. It will be arriving soon.

For many of those under evacuation orders, getting out of harm's way has proved difficult, as airlines canceled flights and motorists had a hard time finding gas. But authorities warned it will still be an extremely risky hurricane.

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