Published: Mon, September 10, 2018
Sci-tech | By Jackie Newman

Hurricane Florence Grows Stronger, Heads Toward US East Coast

Hurricane Florence Grows Stronger, Heads Toward US East Coast

Forecasters at the NHC said Florence would continue to strengthen and "is expected to remain an extremely risky major hurricane through Thursday".

Virginia Gov. Ralph Northam declared a state of emergency Saturday, saying it was becoming increasingly likely that the state could see significant impacts.

The Navy said all ships in Virginia's coastal Hampton Roads area were preparing to leave port for open seas Monday.

"Make your plans now", South Carolina Governor Henry McMaster urged residents during a Sunday afternoon news conference.

Governors in Virginia, North Carolina and SC all declared states of emergency over the past two days in anticipation of the hurricane.

"Isaac is expected to become a hurricane later today or tonight", the NHC said, noting however that weakening is anticipated to begin by the middle of the week.

Swells generated by Florence were affecting Bermuda and starting to reach parts of the US East Coast.

Florence remains a tropical storm located 840 miles southeast of Bermuda, it is moving west at 9 mph.

SC emergency management officials said they were "preparing for the possibility of a large-scale disaster".

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Hennen said computer models agree Florence is on track to hit the Carolinas.

Almost all of the North Carolina and SC coasts are included in the cone of uncertainty for the storm and the latest model Saturday night showed the storm making landfall in Wilmington.

Florence's precise path remained uncertain on Sunday, but the NHC said the "risk of direct impact" somewhere between Florida and North Carolina was increasing.

Florence is the first Category 4 hurricane of 2018 of the Atlantic season.

The Met Office said Trinidad and Tobagi is not under any tropical storm watch or warning at this time.

If Florence makes landfall near Charleston-Myrtle Beach-Wilmington, this would more than likely mean a very high flood threat for us Friday and Saturday.

As of early Sunday, though, Florence was still a tropical storm packing maximum sustained winds of around 70 miles per hour - with storm-force winds extending outward up to 125 miles from her core.

The NHC said the vast storm had maximum sustained winds of almost 75 miles per hour (120 kph), reaching up to 125 miles from its center, as it tracked west-northwestward across the western Atlantic.

Forecasters say it is too soon to tell where Florence would go - some models show the storm slamming into land by late next week, while others indicate it will curve away from shore.

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