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Hurricane Florence Could Bring Up To 30 Inches Of Rain To Carolinas

Hurricane Florence Could Bring Up To 30 Inches Of Rain To Carolinas

North Carolina, South Carolina, Virginia, and Maryland and Columbia (Washington DC) have all declared states of emergency. The NHS warned of "catastrophic" flash flooding from rainfall totals as high as 40 inches.

Whether you're hunkered down in the Carolinas or following the storm's movements from afar, there are many ways to watch Florence live as it creeps over the ocean and begins to hit land.

As of Thursday morning, forecast models showed the storm bringing more rain than originally thought - officials now predict 35 inches of rain will fall in a two-day period as Florence, now a Category 2 storm with 110 miles per hour sustained winds, will stall over Wilmington after making landfall early Friday morning.

Runways at South Carolina's Charleston International Airport closed late Wednesday night and may not reopen until early Saturday morning, according to an update on the airport's web site.

Instead of roaring ashore and quickly heading inland and weakening, as most storms do, Hurricane Florence should instead "stall near the coast and then parallel southwestward toward Georgia", Weather Channel meteorologist Greg Postel said.

"Do you want to get hit with a train or do you want to get hit with a cement truck?" said Jeff Byard, an administrator with the Federal Emergency Management Agency.

We've pulled together some of the key elements that explain why officials are so anxious, and what damage Florence could cause.

Florence's hurricane-force winds extend up to 80 miles from the center, and tropical storm-force winds extend up to 195 miles.

Florence could bring wind-driven storm surges of seawater as high as 13 feet (4 meters) and NHC Director Ken Graham said on Facebook they could push in as far as 2 miles (3 km). "Significant river flooding is expected as a result of excessive rainfall across area hydrologic basins". The biggest problem will likely be mass power outages, he says. "This is a life-threatening situation", the advisory said. "The combination of a risky storm surge and the tide will cause normally dry areas near the coast to be flooded by rising waters moving inland from the shoreline". On Thursday morning, South 17th Street, usually teeming with commuter traffic by 6:30 a.m., was almost devoid of cars.

Cooper and his SC counterpart, Henry McMaster, told the more than 1 million people who have been told to leave that if they don't, they are on their own.

The city of Jacksonville's statement says people have been moved to the city's public safety center as officials work to find a more permanent shelter.


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