Friday, 21 September, 2018

Hurricane Florence is producing waves as high as 83 feet

Hurricane Florence NOAA update Hurricane Florence NOAA update Rainfall inundation expected and Florence at 2am local time
Cary Marshall | 14 September, 2018, 06:29

Forecasters and the United States government are keeping their eyes peeled as Florence, a strong category 2 hurricane, is set to batter the Carolinas on the country's east coast on Friday.

Florence's maximum sustained winds were clocked on Thursday at 165 kph after it was downgraded to a Category 2 on the five-step Saffir-Simpson scale, according to the NHC. Chris Pack, a spokesman for the group, said it was airing ads on the channel aimed at viewers in Tennessee, Indiana, Missouri, North Dakota, Nevada and West Virginia, all key races in the increasingly tight battle for control of the Senate. "For these airports along the coast, like Charleston and Myrtle Beach, the wind and the tidal surge will be the biggest issues".

Hurricanes have a lot of water and if the storm is moving at 10 or 15 miles per hour then it would rain itself out over a much larger area, spreading its rainfall over multiple states instead of just a couple. We only need to remember that tropical storm Irene was not a hurricane when it created tremendous damage to homes and covered bridges in Vermont in 2011. The slower it is the more devastating says NWS Meteorologist Fred McMullen, "When it comes on shore it moves at the pace of a turtle".

It was forecast to make landfall mid-day Friday near Cape Fear, North Carolina, bringing up to 40 inches (1 meter) of rain, and storm surges as high as 13 feet (4 meters), the NHC said.

Water kills more people in hurricanes than wind, and he said it will still be an extremely unsafe storm for rain and storm surge.

America's National Weather Service has warned that the storm is likely to bring, "life-threatening, catastrophic flash flooding and significant river flooding" when it hits land on Thursday or Friday. REUTERS/Randall HillDennis Kernodle talks on the phone during storm preparations of his oceanfront home ahead of the arrival of Hurricane Florence in Ocean Isle Beach, North Carolina, U.S. September 12, 2018.

While Florence has lost some of its strength, it is still considered an extremely unsafe and life-threatening storm.

Just as Hurricane Florence closes in on the Southeast, the area covered by hurricane-force winds has doubled - meaning far more people will get blasted with winds 74 miles per hour or greater.

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The surf and storm surge are already cutting through North Carolina's Outer Banks and bands of rain are lashing the coast.

Storm surge is deadly.

The first large power outage in the Wilmington area also occurred Thursday morning, with the Duke outage map showing almost 1,400 customers in the Acme-Delco area of Columbus County and northwest Brunswick County without power.

Florence is the most unsafe of three tropical systems now in the Atlantic. The area will suffer far beyond the immediate effects expected. "We're forecasting 30 inches of rainfall".

"Your time is running out", Brock Long, administrator of the Federal Emergency Management Agency, said midmorning Thursday. "This is an extremely risky situation".

Images captured by Associated Press journalists show the angst of evacuation and solitary beachgoers finding moments of calm before the storm.

New Hanover County officials said Thursday morning that it could accept more residents seeking shelter at Trask Middle School, Eaton Elementary School, Codington Elementary School, the Johnson Pre-K Center and Noble Middle School.

"Either no (hotel) rooms are available, or we are denied because the breed or size of dogs", she said.

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