Hurricane Florence Zeroes In On Carolinas, Bringing 130 MPH Winds

A hog waste lagoon in Pennsylvania

A hog waste lagoon in Pennsylvania

As of 2 p.m. EDT today (Sept. 12), Florence was a Category 3 hurricane with winds of 125 mph (205 km/h) at its location about 435 miles (700 kilometers) southeast of Wilmington, North Carolina, according to the National Hurricane Center in Miami.

Atlantic Beach, located on the state's Outer Banks barrier islands, had received 30 inches (76 cm) of rain, the U.S. Geological Survey said. Utility companies said millions were expected to lose power and restoration could take weeks.

Axios: "The ties between Hurricane Florence and climate change" - "Hurricane Florence is a unique Atlantic hurricane, projected to stall out after hitting land and forecast to dump upwards of 2 feet of rain on several states, much like Hurricane Harvey did in Texas a year ago".

"Forecasts generally project the storm to make landfall between northern SC and North Carolina's Outer Banks as a strong Category 3 on Thursday, although shifts in the track are possible and storm impacts will expand great distances beyond where landfall occurs".

"The biggest thing is you're always anxious about yourself and friends and family - and whether they'll have a place to come back to", he said.

People who thought they were relatively safe from the onslaught of Hurricane Florence began boarding up and Georgia's governor declared a state of emergency Wednesday as uncertainty over the path of the monster storm spread worry along the Southeastern coast.

More than 722,000 homes and businesses were without power in the Carolinas early on Friday, utility officials said.

Michael Kennedy, an engineer at Boeing, said he planned to leave for his parents' home in Atlanta, Georgia.

Officials in the town of 30,000, which dates to the early 18th century, said over 100 people were rescued from floods and the downtown was under water by Friday afternoon.

"He was thinking of coming here until this morning, and now he asked me if I wanted to come up there", he said.

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As for people staying put, the authorities used to advise that people get three days' worth of supplies, but now it's best to get two weeks' worth of supplies, Sue Anne Bell, an assistant professor of nursing at the University of MI, told Live Science.

"Been through it!" Belli said, referring to Hurricane Hugo, which caused widespread damage in SC in 1989. Walking his dog along empty streets, Belli said he's well stocked with food and water.

All three states ordered mass evacuations along the coast.

A hurricane warning - meaning hurricane conditions are expected within 36 hours - is in effect for a long stretch of the coast, from the Santee River in SC to Duck, N.C., which is part of the Outer Banks.

The NHC is warning it will bring the risk of "life-threatening storm surge and rainfall" and "catastrophic flash flooding and significant river flooding" to parts of the mid-Atlantic states.

Waves 83 feet high were measured near the eye of Florence, according to a tweet from the National Hurricane Center.

The New York Army National Guard is ready to deploy four helicopters - two CH-47 Chinooks and two UH-60 Blackhawks - to help storm response efforts.

Some 7,000 guard members are ready to mobilize in North Carolina, while 1,100 will be activated in SC.

Hurricane Florence has picked up strength as it barrels toward the Carolinas, with an expected landfall pushed back to early Saturday.

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