Thursday, 20 September, 2018

Hurricane Florence hours away from Carolinas

In this NASA handout image taken by Astronaut Ricky Arnold Hurricane Florence gains strength in the Atlantic Ocean as it moves west seen from the International Space Station Delingpole Hurricane Florence – Another Thing Not Caused by Climate Change… NASA via Getty Images 12 Sep 2018
Frank Williams | 13 September, 2018, 22:02

Manure lagoons are about as pleasant as they sound-vast open-air ponds of manure located next to the many hog farms near the North Carolina coast. On North Carolina's Outer Banks, water flowed through streets and between beachfront homes, and some of the few people still left in Nags Head took photos of angry waves topped with white froth.

At 11 p.m. Friday, wind gusts in Raleigh could be recorded at 37 miles per hour.

Bertha Bradley said she has never favoured evacuating ahead of hurricanes.

At 4am BST Wednesday the "monster" storm was centred 670 miles southeast of Cape Fear, North Carolina, moving at 17 mph.

President Donald Trump said Wednesday protecting lives is his "absolute highest priority".

Again, the category may have been downgraded, but the storm surge could still rise up to 13 feet, which is enough to flood homes up to the first floor ceiling. Storm surge warnings indicate a danger of life-threatening inundation from rising water moving inland from the coastline during the coming 36 hours.

Computer simulations - especially the often star-performing European model - push the storm further south, even into SC and Georgia.

The National Hurricane Center's best guess was that Florence's eye would blow ashore as early as Friday afternoon around the North Carolina-South Carolina line.

However, a Cat 2 storm's wind speed is "extremely risky", according to the National Hurricane Center, capable of ripping trees from the ground, wreaking major roof damage on homes and causing power outages that may last weeks and affect three million households. Flash floods will be a major problem for some areas, and the overall flooding could be catastrophic.

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"Since the track is slower and the storm will reside in the area for a longer period of time rainfall amounts are expected to be extreme", Reid Hawkins, science officer for the National Weather Service office in Wilmington, said in a statement. "Kind of like Sandy", said George Kourounis, a storm-chaser from Toronto, who is in Wilmington, N.C. Hurricane Sandy formed in the Atlantic in 2012, hitting Jamaica and the Bahamas as a Category 1.

Weather Underground meteorology director Jeff Masters said Florence eventually could strike as merely a Category 1 hurricane with winds less than 100 miles per hour, but that's still enough to cause at least $1 billion in damage.

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.

"The time to prepare is nearly over", North Carolina Governor Roy Cooper told a morning news conference. Home Depot and Lowe's activated emergency response centers and sent in around 1,100 trucks to get generators, trash bags and bottled water to stores before and after the storm.

High tides and increasing sea levels from climate change can magnify the effects of storm surge, and surge doesn't necessarily weaken in step with wind speeds.

There are generally three components to a hurricane; strong winds, storm surge and heavy rain.

"But afterwards, I would expect that he will do that", Hannity said, referring to the decision to end the Mueller probe.

A power outage model run at the University of MI projects that 3.2 million customers will be without electricity because of the storm, mostly in the eastern half of North Carolina.

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