NHC downgrades Florence to still unsafe Category 3 hurricane

Fierce winds and massive waves are expected to lash the coasts of North and SC and Virginia even before Florence makes landfall by early Friday, bringing a storm surge as much as 13 feet (4 meters).

As soon as Deal made the declaration, Coweta County Emergency Management Agency director Jay Jones said he sprang into action. Forecasters warn that millions could be affected by the hurricane, and have urged mass evacuations of areas within its path.

Alexander Gerst, a German astronaut who's now orbiting Earth from 250 miles up, has a warning for humans on the planet below him.

Wind speeds in the eye of Florence reached almost 150 miles per hour just after midnight on September 12, according to data recorded by an Air Force aircraft hovering over the hurricane.

While coastal residents frantically boarded up homes and businesses and hit the road, others chose to ride out a storm that is forecast to dump up to three feet (almost a meter) of rain in some areas.

Toronto-Dominion Bank has temporarily closed some of its locations in the Carolinas as Hurricane Florence approaches the USA east coast.

"Get out of its way, don't play games with it, it's a big one, maybe as big as they've seen", Trump said. "We'll handle it. We're ready, we're able".


It posted: "Preparations to protect life and property should be rushed to completion".

Florence is predicted to make landfall tomorrow, with states of emergency in effect in North and SC and Virginia. For example, Bojangles (BOJA) and Koninklijke Ahold Delhaize(ADRNY) have more than 20% exposure to a landfall in Wilmington, North Carolina.

Byard, the FEMA official, said "this storm is not going to be a glancing blow". Experts are saying Florence, a "monster", could be one of the most powerful storms to ever hit the East Coast.

Even more troubling is the amount of rain that could fall in southeastern North Carolina due to the storm slowing down or stalling out. Dubbed the "Storm of a lifetime", the National Weather Service expects the hurricane to reach the Carolinas on Thursday or Friday, and may linger over the weekend - bringing with it "catastrophic" winds and flooding rainfall.

The overall trend is "exceptionally bad news", said University of Miami hurricane researcher Brian McNoldy, since it "smears a landfall out over hundreds of miles of coastline, most notably the storm surge".

A state of emergency has also been declared in Maryland, North Carolina, South Carolina, Virginia and Washington. About 1.7 million residents have been urged to flee from parts of North and SC.

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