Friday, 16 November, 2018

Hurricane Florence smashes into US East Coast, rescuers scramble

This satellite image provided by NOAA shows Hurricane Florence off the eastern coast of the United States on Thursday Sept. 13 2018 NOAA via AP This satellite image provided by NOAA shows Hurricane Florence off the eastern coast of the United States on Thursday
Frank Williams | 15 September, 2018, 00:19

"Hurricane Florence is powerful, slow and relentless", he said.

The effects of Hurricane Florence have already arrived on the East Coast of the USA, where massive floods have already begun and as much asthe National Hurricane Center forecasts 40 inches of rain and 11 feet of flooding from the storm surge.

Fortunately for House, he says this storm should not be a devastating event for the beach town in terms of loss of life.

Reports out of Wilmington, North Carolina, said that the outer bands of wind and rain from Florence, a Category 2 storm with 105 miles per hour winds, are hitting North Carolina.

Inland cities and towns will not be spared from the storm, with anywhere from 5-20 inches of rain forecast to fall in many parts of North and SC.

The storm surge will be near and to the right of where the eye of the hurricane makes landfall.

"This rainfall would produce catastrophic flash flooding and prolonged significant river flooding", the Hurricane Center said.

Experts are warning people that the most serious threat posed by Florence might just be the massive amount of water it is expected to leave in its wake, from the storm surge that could exceed 13 feet in some areas to a deluge of rainfall that may hit 40 inches in certain pockets.

While the storm's winds will abate as it moves inland, they could continue to gust to tropical-storm-force - especially near its core.

The Wilmington airport had a wind gust clocked at 105 miles per hour (169 kph), the highest since Hurricane Helene in 1958.

Hurricane Helene: Storm is powering towards United Kingdom with 70mph gusts possible
While now classified as a hurricane, Helene will be downgraded to a storm by the time it reaches the shores of Northern Ireland. Rain projections also increased, with some locations along the North Carolina coast now expected to get up to 40 inches.

Wilmington should be ready for a prolonged and devastating impact as Hurricane Florence roars over Southeastern North Carolina on Friday.

"This storm will bring destruction", North Carolina Governor Roy Cooper said.

North Carolina alone is forecast to get 9.6 trillion gallons, enough to cover the Tar Heel state to a depth of about 10 inches (25 centimeters). Almost 14 million people are under a flash flood watch, meaning water levels could rise swiftly at any moment.

In Jacksonville, North Carolina, next to Camp Lejeune, firefighters and police fought wind and rain as they went door-to-door to pull people out of the Triangle Motor Inn after the structure began to crumble and the roof started to collapse.

As the climate warms, the way air moves through the atmosphere can become disrupted, possibly blocking these types of storms in place more often.

Florence is expected to produce heavy and excessive rainfall into coastal North Carolina, with the possibility of it stretching into the far northeastern portion of SC, the NHC said.

Joyce, with winds extending about 35 miles from its center, is expected to tap the brakes a bit and turn eastward by Friday night, and then accelerate northeastward over the weekend.

Watch the report above and more reporting from Wrightsville Beach, N.C. below.

Screaming winds bent trees and raindrops flew sideways as Florence's leading edge battered the Carolina coast Thursday. Storm surges as high as 7 to 11 feet remain threats from Cape Fear to Cape Lookout in North Carolina, with life-threatening surges up to 6 feet possible across a much wider area.

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