Hurricane Florence shifts south as Georgia and Carolinas hunker down

Hurricane Florence shifts south as Georgia and Carolinas hunker down

Hurricane Florence shifts south as Georgia and Carolinas hunker down

Forecasters have adjusted Hurricane Florence's projected path, saying that after it makes landfall, it is likely to take a more southerly route than expected.

The National Hurricane Centre said it was a potentially catastrophic Category-4 storm, but was expected to keep drawing energy from the warm water and intensify to near Category 5, which means winds of 157 miles per hour or higher.

The evacuations have prompted U-Haul to keep more than 90 of its storage facilities open so those leaving the path of the storm can use them for free, according to Elijah Mack, U-Haul Company of Coastal South Carolina president. It's gaining strength and could even be upgraded to Category 5 before it makes landfall early Friday, according to forecasts.

Boeing Co suspended work on Tuesday at the SC plant where it assembles 787 widebody jetliners, and a Volvo automobile plant in South Carolina's evacuation zone was also closed, company officials said. But the change was probably temporary and didn't do anything to lessen the danger, said Jeff Byard, an administrator with the Federal Emergency Management Agency. A hurricane's counterclockwise rotation mean Florence's strongest and heaviest rain bands will be northwest of the eye - right over Central North Carolina.

Hurricane Florence is still a few days out from making landfall, and as we've seen, the forecast tract has varied.

The threat has sparked a rush of evacuation efforts in SC and North Carolina, with more than a million people urged to get out of Florence's way.

The longer the storm stalls near the coast, the more precipitation it will be able to pull from the Atlantic and dump inland.


"This storm is going to be a direct hit". The storm is moving west-northwest at 17 mph and is 785 miles east-southeast of Cape Fear, North Carolina.

Aside from that mammoth coastal flooding, Florence will likely inundate cities far inland as well.

While one man concluded: 'We are about to get pounded, but since we have absolutely no control over it, all you can do is laugh, and pray for the best'. "Everyone was sold out", she said.

To hasten evacuations from coastal SC, officials reversed the flow of traffic on some highways so all major roads led away from shore. High winds will bring down trees and power lines, so residents are urged to be prepared to go without electricity for several days.

About 1 million people have been ordered to evacuate their homes before the storm-categorized as a Category 3 on Wednesday-makes landfall, which it is expected to do on Friday. In the Wilmington area, Florence could batter the coast with 140 miles per hour winds and more than 20 inches of rain.

North Carolina resident Roberto Guzman carries belongings from his mobile home as he leaves Wilmington a day before the storm is due to strike.

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