When will Hurricane Florence hit?

Mandatory evacuations issued for Outer Banks ahead of Florence

Mandatory evacuations issued for Outer Banks ahead of Florence

Should Florence make landfall as a Category 4, it would be the first Category 4 hurricane since Hazel in 1954 to hit North Carolina.

Packing winds of up to 220 km/h (140 mph) late Monday, Florence was expected to further strengthen and become "an extremely risky 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.

The flooding will depend whether Florence slows down and lingers over coastal areas as it moves inland, Salna says.

Trump, who has faced criticism for his administration's response to Hurricane Maria in 2017, which killed an estimated 3,000 people in the USA territory of Puerto Rico, knocked out power to all 3.4 million residents of the Caribbean island, with thousands still without power even six months after the storm hit, said the federal government was "totally prepared" for Florence.

The center says the storm is moving west-northwest at 17 miles per hour, and has maximum sustained winds of about 130 miles per hour.

By 8 a.m. Tuesday, Florence's eye was about 950 miles east-southeast of Cape Fear, North Carolina, and moving west-northwest at 15 mph.

Hurricane Florence's size is "staggering", National Hurricane Center Director Ken Graham warned.

The centre of the massive storm is forecast to make landfall late Thursday or early Friday along a stretch of coastline already saturated by rising seas, and then meander for days, inundating several states and triggering life-threatening floods.

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Florence is anticipated to mainly impact South Carolina, North Carolina and Virginia.

The National Hurricane Center warned on Twitter that there may be a high risk of "storm surge at the coast and freshwater flooding from a prolonged heavy rainfall event inland". Its centre will move between Bermuda and the Bahamas on Tuesday and Wednesday and approach the coast of SC or North Carolina on Thursday, the National Hurricane Center said.

That amount of storm surge would put Florence on par with Hurricane Fran. With 1-to-3 feet of rainfall expected in some areas, significant river flooding will occur.

"We can not emphasize the importance to take action now", he said.

The last time the U.S. capital declared a state of emergency was in January 2016 when a winter storm dubbed "Snowzilla" blanketed the capital region in knee-deep snow.

Hurricane Florence is barreling toward the southeastern United States because of the so-called "atmospheric brick wall", the high-pressure system that's guiding it there, forecasters report. "We are taking Hurricane Florence seriously".

"This is not a storm that people need to ride out", Cooper told reporters.

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