Trump approves emergency declaration for NC ahead of Hurricane Florence

NC rep asks Trump for expedited disaster declaration ahead of Hurricane Florence

NC rep asks Trump for expedited disaster declaration ahead of Hurricane Florence

The National Hurricane Center (NHC) said that Florence's maximum sustained winds had eased slightly to 120 miles per hour (195 kph) and it had been downgraded to a Category 3 storm from a Category 4 on the five-level Saffir-Simpson wind scale.

A mandatory evacuation is in order for North Carolina's Hatteras Island, beginning Monday at noon.

"This is a serious storm and it's going to effect the entire state", Northam told a news conference.

For many people, the challenge could be finding a safe refuge.

The storm's potential path also includes half a dozen nuclear power plants, pits holding coal-ash and other industrial waste, and numerous hog farms that store animal waste in massive open-air lagoons.

The storm was moving west at 13 miles per hour, the hurricane center said. People living well inland should prepare to lose power and anticipate flooding and other hazards, he warned.

"While it is too soon to determine the exact timing, location and magnitude of these impacts, interest at the coast and inland from SC into the mid-Atlantic region should closely monitor the progress of Florence", said a NOAA statement.

"Florence is quickly becoming a powerful hurricane", a hurricane specialist wrote.

"Life-threatening" hurricane and storm surges watches have been issued for huge swathes of the USA southeastern coast as Hurricane Florence barrels across the Atlantic Ocean.

A satellite image shows Hurricane Florence spinning in the Atlantic Ocean Monday morning, September 10, 2018.

Rising water tidelines could surge to as high as 12ft between Cape Fear and Cape Lookout, north of Carolina Beach.

"On the forecast track, the center of Florence will move over the southwestern Atlantic Ocean between Bermuda and the Bahamas [Wednesday night], and approach the coast of North Carolina or SC in the hurricane warning area on Thursday and Friday, and move slowly near the coastline through Saturday", the NHC said.

Two other storms are spinning in the Atlantic.

Florence could stall out after striking the coast, forecaster say.

States of emergency have been declared in North and SC as well as Virginia in readiness for Florence.

Meanwhile, Pentagon spokesman, Col. Robert Manning said, "Northern Command is spending an advanced team to the emergency operations center in Raleigh, North Carolina Monday to conduct an assessment and coordinate with federal and state partners".

"It's on par with the storms we flew past year, like Maria and Irma", Kibbey said.

Swells from the storm are already reaching Bermuda and parts of the US coast.

With "monumental" rainfall totals of up to 40 inches possible, "the rain from Florence may break all-time state records for rainfall from a hurricane or tropical storm", Weather Underground meteorologist Jeff Masters said.

"I think we did a fantastic job in Puerto Rico", Trump said during an exchange with reporters at the White House. But the schools called off their game while citing the "increasing likelihood of severe and unsafe conditions" after discussions from West Virginia, the ACC and emergency management officials. "It's the peak of the hurricane season, so this is definitely the time", he says.

Jones urged Chatham County residents to continue to monitor Florence and be generally prepared for hurricanes with a hurricane kit, shelter-in-place supplies and an evacuation plan.

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