James City County declares state of emergency ahead of Hurricane Florence

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

"On the forecast track, the center of Florence will move over the southwestern Atlantic Ocean between Bermuda and the Bahamas Tuesday and Wednesday, and approach the coast of SC or North Carolina on Thursday", the National Hurricane Center said. Officials ordered residents and visitors to begin evacuating the Outer Banks.

James City County has declared a state of emergency in anticipation of effects from Hurricane Florence.

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

For many, the challenge could be finding a safe refuge: If Florence slows to a crawl just off the coast, it could carry torrential rains up into the Appalachian mountains, causing flash floods, mudslides and other unsafe weather across a wide area.

The center also spoke about the storm's power.

National Hurricane Center Director Ken Graham is warning that the "staggering" size of Florence means its impacts will be felt far and wide.

"We've basically got everything we need. and we're just going to wait it out for a few days", he said. "When you stall a system like this and it moves real slow, some of that rainfall can extend well away from the centre".

"Life-threatening" hurricane and storm surges watches have been issued for huge swathes of the United States southeastern coast as Hurricane Florence barrels across the Atlantic Ocean. Meanwhile, UNC, North Carolina State and Wake Forest all issued statements saying they were monitoring the storm, with N.C. State and UNC noting they were also consulting with regional authorities. With those two bodies of water surrounding where so many people live, how vulnerable is Wilmington to flooding and storm surge? "It is still expected to be a large and extremely unsafe hurricane when it makes landfall", expected late Thursday.

Preparations intensified up and down the densely populated coast.

Mass evacuations were ordered along the U.S. Atlantic Coast as Hurricane Florence, a Category 4 storm and the most powerful to menace the region in almost three decades, barreled toward the region on Tuesday.

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North Carolina governor Roy Cooper's office said Florence is already being felt along the state's coast, with large sea swells resulting in life-threatening rip currents and surf.

President Donald Trump is canceling a campaign rally in advance of Hurricane Florence's landfall.

Meanwhile, forecasters urged residents to complete such storm preparations by the end of Wednesday, saying some impacts from Florence were nearly a certainty by Thursday.

The last major hurricane to hit the North Carolina coast was Matthew in 2016, a storm that caused major river and flash flooding that killed 26 in the state.

"The evacuation order will be inconvenient, but we do not want to sacrifice one SC life, we are not going to gamble the lives of SC people", McMaster said.

The retired Havelock native said she'd been through hurricanes before and said she was "not scared" about the prospect of the first major hurricane of the 2018 season.

"The federal government stands ready to assist", she said.

"We here in North Carolina are bracing for a hard hit", Cooper said Monday.

"As I tweeted with Harvey last year.it is important to understand the potential one-two punch from Hurricane Florence", University of Georgia meteorologist Marshall Shepherd said.

The National Hurricane Center says a new report from an Air Force Reserve Unit hurricane hunter aircraft indicates that Hurricane Florence's top sustained winds have decreased slightly to 130 miles per hour (215 kph), with higher gusts.

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