Florence upgraded to a Category 4 and approaching the Carolinas

Florence upgraded to a Category 4 and approaching the Carolinas

Florence upgraded to a Category 4 and approaching the Carolinas

Hurricane Florence is expected to hit the southeastern U.S.as "a large and extremely unsafe hurricane", the National Hurricane Center says, after the storm quickly strengthened on Monday.

The US-based National Hurricane Centre said: “Florence is forecast to rapidly strengthen to a major hurricane by Monday, and is expected to remain an extremely unsafe major hurricane through Thursday.

"We are in the bull's eye", North Carolina Governor Roy Cooper said at a news conference. The University of North Carolina Wilmington announced it has canceled classes and issued a voluntary evacuation for students starting at noon today. Residents and visitors in popular tourist spots such as Duck and Corolla faced a Tuesday deadline. She grew up on the shore, and says this will be only the second time she's evacuated.

Hurricane season runs through November 30. Steady weakening should begin by Tuesday, the center says.

That's because Florence will reach areas that have already experienced a lot of rain in recent weeks - and it won't take much for flash floods to start in these regions.

WILMINGTON - Hurricane Florence has strengthened into a Category 3 storm with sustained winds of 115 miles per hour, according to the 11 a.m. update from the National Hurricane Center. The storm was moving west at 13 mph (20 kmh) and expected to accelerate over the next 36 hours.

In Guam, Typhoon Mangkhut - a Category 4 storm - narrowly missed dealing a direct blow to the island.

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"There is an increasing risk of two life-threatening impacts from Florence: Storm surge at the coast and freshwater flooding from a prolonged heavy rainfall event inland", the National Hurricane Center said Sunday. Even before the evacuation order, Dare County emergency officials warned that rough seas and strong rip currents are already creating risky conditions. Cotton, corn and soybean fields, along with massive hog and poultry facilities lie in Florence's forecast path.Smithfield Foods Inc., the No. 1 hog producer, and chicken producer Sanderson Farms Inc. saw North Carolina operations disrupted in 2016 in flooding from Hurricane Matthew.

Spaghetti plots from hurricane forecast models and other weather forecast models show the likelihood of Florence making landfall in the United States is now significantly higher, with the cone narrowed on the Carolina's. The Weather Channel warned of a "disastrous" level of flooding for parts of the area.

There no coastal warnings or watches yet. SC emergency management officials said they were "preparing for the possibility of a large-scale disaster".

The South Carolina Governor has ordered a mandatory evacuation on Monday of up to one million residents of the U.S. state's eastern coast ahead of the arrival of Hurricane Florence. It poses no threat to land at this time, the center said. "The best safety plan is preparation and common sense".

This NOAA/RAMMB satellite image taken at 12:15:31 UTC on September 10, 2018, shows Hurricane Florence off the U.S. east coast in the Atantic Ocean.

Hurricane Florence will be a devastating storm after landfall.

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