Hurricane Florence: North Carolina family's garage submerged in water

Hurricane Florence Reduces Its Intensity But Not Its Destructive Power

Hurricane Florence Reduces Its Intensity But Not Its Destructive Power

Hurricane Florence made landfall on the North Carolina coast early Friday morning, bringing a potentially catastrophic storm surge, and torrential rains that are expected to last for days.

Roy Cooper warned residents to not let their guard down ahead of Hurricane Florence's landfall later this week.

North Carolina's Emergency Management tweeted that more than 154,000 homes were already without electricity by late Thursday.

Yesterday, the European Space Agency released a short video of astronauts aboard the space station watching the storm out of the cupola armed with powerful cameras to capture its giant knot of storm clouds.

Beside inundating the coast with wind-driven storm, Florence could dump 20 to 30 inches (51-76 cm) of rain, with up to 40 inches in parts of North Carolina, the National Hurricane Center predicts.

Hurricane Florence is expected to pack a potentially life-threatening punch as it continues its path toward the U.S. east coast.

Baker said the rain will bring damaging flash flooding to all areas of the Wilmington region, not just low-lying areas that are particularly vulnerable.

"We know we're in for a long haul here", he said of the forecast for the coming days.

Florence, which is now a slow-moving Category 2 storm, is expected to linger over the Carolinas before turning north and sliding into western Virginia.

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Flooding and a strong storm surge prompted more than 90 calls to the emergency operation center in Craven County, N.C., for residents trapped in vehicles and homes, spokeswoman Amber Parker said.

With a storm surge warning in effect, the authorities urge people to prepare themselves for the disaster.

It will likely come on shore Friday near Wilmington, North Carolina. Hundreds more were rescued elsewhere from rising water.

Winds bent trees towards the ground and raindrops flew sideways as Florence moved in for an extended stay, with enough of its killer winds swirling overseas to maintain its power.

"The sun rose this morning on an extremely risky situation and it's going to get worse", he said at a news conference in Raleigh.

The tropical storm-force winds from Helene should begin impacting the Azores around 8 a.m. Monday.

Forecasters said that given the storm's size and sluggish track, it could cause enormous damage similar to what Houston, Texas, saw during Hurricane Harvey just over a year ago, with floodwaters swamping thousands of homes and businesses.

"We'll operate without power; we have candles. So if you're on the beach the time to go is now".

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