'GET OUT OF ITS WAY!': 'Monster' Hurricane Florence aims to drench Carolinas

Carolinas brace for Hurricane Florence which is going to be a 'Mike Tyson punch' to the coast FEMA official warns

Packing maximum sustained winds of 140 miles per hour (225 km per hour), the storm ranked as a Category 4 on the five-step Saffir-Simpson hurricane scale and was expected to grow stronger and larger over the next few days, the NHC said.

The National Hurricane Center says it's now expected to hit Wilmington and then veer west, taking it south of Charlotte.

The National Hurricane Center (NHC) said Florence had racked up winds of 130mph and is on a trajectory which suggests its centre is most likely to hit the south coast of North Carolina by Friday.

The world's largest pig abattoir has shut down and stock moved as Hurricane Florence moves towards North Carolina on the United States east coast, threatening an environmental disaster.

"The atmosphere overall, before the potential landfall, certainly looks like we are going to have a very unsafe hurricane on our hands", Weather Channel meteorologist Jim Cantore told the Wilmington (N.C.) StarNews.

- Hurricane Florence continues to gain strength while steadily making its way toward the East Coast.

Is it true we could see feet of rain?

"We're going to get a lot of rainfall in a relatively short time", he said, adding flooding could be "life-changing" for many. Florence exploded into a potentially catastrophic hurricane Monday as it closed in on North and SC, carrying winds up to 140 miles per hour (220 kph) and water that could wreak havoc over a wide stretch of the eastern United States later this week.




The National Hurricane Center (NHC) said: "Florence is still forecast to be an extremely risky major hurricane when it nears the U.S. coast late Thursday and Friday".

He warned people in surrounding areas to "remain vigilant" and expect flash floods at the start of next week.

The storm is so large, even central OH could receive rain from the system, according to the National Hurricane Center.

The hurricane is gaining pace as it heads for the Carolinas, where 1.7million people have been told to evacuate. The map below shows the greatest impacts in North Carolina and along the eastern coastline, as far south as Charleston and as far north as New Jersey.

"Get to a safe place now or by Thursday morning", he said.

The storm has pretty much followed the forecast track through now, but the issue will be Thursday or Friday as it nears the coast and the steering currents collapse. Owing to North Carolina's unique coastal geography, and with the extra nudge from the past 30 years of sea-level rise, Florence's surge could top 20 feet.

As of Wednesday morning, 20 eastern North Carolina counties were under either a mandatory or voluntary evacuation, or some combination of the two, according to the N.C. Department of Public Safety.

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