Don't Be Fooled by Hurricane Florence Being 'Downgraded.' It's Still Very Dangerous

Pat Wise
September 14, 2018

Already some roads were flooded. It marks the beginning of a prolonged assault from wind and water, which - by the time it's over - is likely to bring devastating damage and flooding to millions of people in the Southeast.

"We're seeing on social media, we're seeing comments and calls coming into our hotline that people are saying, 'Oh, it's only a Cat 2.' Well, only a Cat 2 has winds of up to 96 to 110 miles per hour", Derrec Becker, spokesman for the S.C. Emergency Management Division told The State on Thursday.

Every now and then nature throws out a storm so massive we can only gaze upon it in humbling awe at its fearsome power.

Even though the storm's category fell from a 4 to a 2 Wednesday (local time), forecasters stressed the category is only an evaluation of the storm's peak winds in a very narrow core near the center of the storm.

Hurricane Florence carries a heavy risk of flash floods as it brings up to 13-foot storm surge and a possible 40 inches of rain to the Carolina coast. Widespread rainfall amounts could reach 152mm to 300mm, spurring flooding.

People in areas vulnerable to a risky hurricane have left or are fleeing ahead of the storm's expected Friday or Saturday landfall.

Florence will bring large rainfall totals through Saturday in North Carolina, north SC and Virginia, causing catastrophic flash flooding.

By late Thursday afternoon, the Carolina coasts can expect winds topping 80 miles per hour. This website is not intended for users located within the European Economic Area.

Windows and doors are boarded up in anticipation of the arrival of Hurricane Florence September 12, 2018 in Morehead City, North Carolina.

All of this has led to fears that the state could face an environmental disaster if industrial waste - including hog manure and coal ash - is washed into people's homes.

Sex abuse: Pope to meet Thursday with United States bishops
Achieving the goals, he had said, would involve "consultation with experts, laity and clergy, as well as the Vatican". Conference of Catholic Bishops issued a policy in 2002 that is regarded as the gold standard policy.

Apple unveils three new iPhone Xs
Apple Watch is going to the next level with an upgrade to the screen size in the same body with new watch faces and complications. Apple didn't immediately say how much the Max will cost, but it's expected to top the iPhone X's $1,000 starting price.

Brickyard 400 gets underway Monday after weekend storms
A crash involving Landon Cassill and Jeffrey Earnhardt late in the race led to a caution and restart with three laps remaining. Truex and the team won the Cup championship previous year and go into next week's playoffs trying to defend their title.

Like a bulldozer, the storm's winds and forward motion will push a tremendous amount of water onshore when it makes landfall.

But between evacuations and storm shutter installations, NASA and NOAA are keeping people informed and entertained.

Masters said there's a tug-of-war between two clear-skies high-pressure systems - one off the coast and one over MI.

Will Epperson, 36, a golf course assistant superintendent, said he and his wife had planned to ride out the storm in his home in Hampstead, North Carolina, but reconsidered due to its ferocity. The Charleston area is under a storm surge watch.

"Floodwaters may enter numerous structures, and some may become uninhabitable or washed away", the Weather Service warned.

More than 1 million people have been ordered to evacuate - but the window to do so in nearly over.

Maryland's largest natural gas and electric company, BGE, said it was also preparing for the storm.

When flight operations can resume will depend on how long Florence sticks around, and forecasters predict it could sit and drench areas of the Carolinas with a deluge of rainwater over a couple of days. They also instituted a 24-hour curfew.

"Well-constructed frame homes could sustain major roof and siding damage". Most trees will be snapped or uprooted and power poles downed. Millions of people are expected to lose power from the storm and restoration could take weeks.

Duke Energy Corp, the biggest utility in the area with over 4 million customers in the Carolinas, estimated the storm could cause between 1 million to 3 million outages. As serene as the images are, it's hard to imagine what conditions are like in the storm and on the water under it. Officials say people refusing to evacuate could end up alone, drenched and in the dark, as rescue crews won't go out to help in winds above 80 km/h.

Other reports by

Discuss This Article

FOLLOW OUR NEWSPAPER