Tuesday, 16 October, 2018

Water - not wind - is the deadliest storm hazard

Doug Lewis and Chris Williams use plywood with the words'Looters will be shot to cover the windows of Knuckleheads bar as they try to protect the business ahead of the arrival of Hurricane Florence 10M in crosshairs of Hurricane ‘Florence’
Frank Williams | 17 September, 2018, 03:15

- The big slosh has begun, and the consequences could be disastrous.

As Florence churned slowly towards the coasts of North and SC as a Category 2 hurricane, federal and state officials issued final appeals to residents to get out of the path of the "once in a lifetime" weather system.

Hurricane Florence has already proven to be not just powerful and destructive but wildly unpredictable. Heavy rainfall began after dark.

"I think it was Arthur", he said.

"We have completed all of our water rescues & want to sincerely thank all of the volunteers who helped us save lives".

The city's residential garbage, recycling and yard waste has been cancelled for Friday and has been rescheduled for Monday, weather permitting. "It can go back up", she said.

"This is going to be a bad, bad situation".

North Carolina Governor Roy Cooper warned residents not to "underestimate" the storm.

Florence had been a Category 3 hurricane with 120 miles per hour winds on Thursday but dropped to Category 1 before coming ashore. He stayed in the bar to ride out the storm.

In Norfolk, Virginia, police were alerted to people dressed in fluorescent vests going door to door and telling residents that they had to leave their homes and businesses, The Associated Press reported Thursday. Sixty-one shelters have opened in SC - 12 designated for evacuees with special medical needs - able to accommodate more than 31,000 additional people.

In South Carolina, officials urged residents to prepare for wind, rain, extended power outages, downed trees and even potential mudslides as the storm hovers over the state and dumps millions of gallons of rainwater, as Hurricane Harvey did in the Houston area a year ago.

"We have quite literally surrounded the expected affected area with DOD capability that will be critical in hours and days following the storm's impact", said Air Force Gen. Terrence O'Shaughnessy, who heads U.S. Northern Command and the North American Aerospace Defense Command. Be SAFE! " Trump tweeted on Wednesday. As the recovery from past storms continues in many rural towns, the next storm is about to strike.

Spanish moss waved in the trees as the winds picked up in Wilmington, and floating docks bounced atop swells at Morehead City.

Isaac dissipated, and updates on Atlantic storms Helene, Joyce
The tropical storm is tracking to the west at 20 miles per hour with top winds of 60 miles per hour with higher gusts. At 500 PM EDT (2100 UTC), the center of Hurricane Florence was located near latitude 30.9 North, longitude 72.5 West.

General O'Shaughnessy said there were about 7,000 USA military personnel now in place and ready to respond to the storm, along with ships, helicopters, high-wheeled vehicles and other equipment. "Because it's Mother Nature".

According to stats compiled from Weather.us meteorologist Ryan Maue, about 17 trillion gallons of rain will fall over the Carolinas, Georgia and Virginia. That's enough to fill the Chesapeake Bay or cover the entire state of Texas with almost 4 inches (10 centimeters) of water, he calculated.

The state's officials say more than 400,000 people have evacuated the coast and more than 4000 people have taken refuge in shelters as the storm approaches. Along the coast, fewer homes have flood insurance than five years ago.

There were no immediate reports of injuries or fatalities, though most of the city was without power and thousands of buildings had been damaged, said Roberts on Friday.

"It doesn't matter how much money you have or how many generators you have if you can't get gas", she said. It's expected to bring tropical storm conditions and up to 5 inches of rain across the Windward Islands, Leeward Islands and Puerto Rico.

And yet another tropical storm formed in the Atlantic Thursday night.

Duke Energy Co. said Florence could knock out electricity to three-quarters of its 4 million customers in the Carolinas, and outages could last for weeks.

Southeastern coastal North Carolina into far northeastern SC could see 20 to 30 inches of rainfall; some isolated areas could see 40 inches.

Florence was making landfall as a Category 1 hurricane Friday morning near Wilmington. Its forward movement increased slightly to 9 km/h Hurricane-force winds extended 150km from its centre.

Florence could bring wind-driven storm surges of seawater as high as 13 feet (4 meters) and NHC Director Ken Graham said on Facebook they could push in as far as 2 miles (3 km). But previous research has shown that the strongest hurricanes are getting wetter, more intense and intensifying faster because of human-caused climate change.

Eduardo Munoz / Reuters The Union Point Park Complex is seen flooded as the Hurricane Florence comes ashore in New Bern, North Carolina.

Frustrated after evacuating his beach home for a storm that was later downgraded, retired nurse Frederick Fisher grumbled in the lobby of a Wilmington hotel several miles inland. "I've got four cats inside the house".

FEMA's Long warned the danger was not only along the coast: "Inland flooding kills a lot of people, unfortunately, and that's what we're about to see", he said.

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