Published: Wed, September 12, 2018
Worldwide | By Myra Stephens

Hurricane Florence Is Probably Going To Cost A Lot Of Money

Hurricane Florence Is Probably Going To Cost A Lot Of Money

Packing winds of up to 220 km/h (140 mph) late Monday, Florence was expected to further strengthen and become "an extremely unsafe major hurricane" by the time in makes landfall in the Carolinas on Thursday, the National Hurricane Center (NHC) said in a 21:00 UTC update.

More than a million people were under mandatory orders to evacuate in coastal areas of North Carolina, South Carolina and Virginia, with many more being urged to do so voluntarily.

The slow-moving storm, the most severe hurricane to threaten the US mainland this year, was located about 785 miles (1,260 km) southeast of Cape Fear, North Carolina, at 4:30 p.m. EDT (2030 GMT), according to the NHC.

The governors of North and South Carolina, Maryland and Virginia declared states of emergency ahead of the approaching storm.

Forecasts generally have Wilmington, North Carolina, as the city most likely to bear the brunt of powerful Hurricane Florence as it makes landfall.

It exploded into a Category 4 storm yesterday, carrying winds up to 220km/h and water that could wreak havoc over a wide stretch of the eastern United States this week.

Regarding the Bahamas, the American meteorologist said Hurricane Florence is going to take a track that will keep it east and northeast of the country. That would make it the most destructive storm in US history in terms of financial losses for homeowners and businesses.

"I'm telling them to go inland, but I'm anxious about the rain and tornadoes too", Roberts said.

"There's never been a storm like Florence".

For more general information on the 2018 Atlantic hurricane season, check out this hurricane season guide by Live Science, a Space.com sister site.

Florence was located about 405 miles south of Bermuda, moving to the west, northwest at 15 mph.

Authorities in coastal towns have told residents to pick up sandbags and in North Carolina they are already preparing bulldozers and chain saws in case they are needed in any future clean-up and rescue operations.

Should Florence make landfall as a Category 4, it would be the first Category 4 hurricane since Hazel in 1954 to hit North Carolina. Once Florence pushes over land, the winds will rapidly decrease below hurricane force by Friday night and below tropical storm force over the weekend.

"You can have a lot more impact from a slow-moving storm that sits over you than one that moves on through", Barnes said.

"Right now, I think all North Carolinians need to be concerned about Hurricane Florence", said Barnes, who also serves as director of development for the North Carolina Aquarium Society.

He has also canceled campaign events Thursday and Friday in anticipation of the storm.

South Carolina Gov. Henry McMaster said an estimated 1 million people would be fleeing his state's coast, with eastbound Interstate 26 heading into Charleston and US 501 heading into Myrtle Beach reversed to ease the exodus.

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