Georgia governor declares emergency ahead of hurricane

Olive Hawkins
September 14, 2018

Updated NHC forecasts showed the storm lingering near the coast, bringing days of heavy rains that could bring intense inland flooding from SC, where some areas could see as much as one metre of rain, to Virginia.

"Hurricane Florence is looking even bigger than anticipated", Trump said.

Governors in South Carolina, North Carolina, and Virginia have issued mandatory evacuations and lane reversals.

The News & Observer reports that the storm's path shifted early Wednesday and it is now bearing down on southern North Carolina and northern SC, where it could dump up to 40 inches of rain in places.

"While some weakening is expected to begin by late Thursday, Florence is still forecast to be an extremely risky major hurricane when it nears the USA coast on Friday", the NHC said in an 11 a.m. With Hurricane Florence set to wallop the area as a Category 4 hurricane, there are fears the ponds could overflow or even collapse amid extremely heavy rain, sending vast amounts of manure from thousands of farms into rivers and contaminating groundwater.

Tropical storm-force winds extended 175 miles (280 kilometers) from Florence's center, and hurricane-force winds reached out 70 miles (110 kilometers).

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Tropical storm warnings were in effect for Martinique, Dominica and Guadeloupe, while watches were in effect for Montserrat, St. Rain projections also increased, with some locations along the North Carolina coast now expected to get up to 40 inches.

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Hurricane Florence put a corridor of more than 10 million people in the crosshairs Wednesday as the monster storm closed in on the Carolinas, uncertainty over its projected path spreading worry across a widening swath of the Southeast. Rather than pushing up toward western Virginia, the storm's center is now predicted to move across the middle of SC.

Communities could lose electricity for weeks, Federal Emergency Management Agency Administrator Brock Long said. Some 3,000 people died in the aftermath of that storm. "What is flooding going to do to our home, our city?"

"This rainfall would produce catastrophic flash flooding and significant river flooding", the hurricane center says.

"I'm scared we'll get 30 inches or more of rain", said Carol Trojniar, 69, a longtime Wilmington resident and retired real estate agent who has never experienced a Category 4 hurricane. "Everyone was sold out", she said. "If we try to leave, we'll just get stuck in the rain".

Melody Rawson evacuated her first-floor apartment in Myrtle Beach and arrived at Atlanta Motor Speedway in Hampton, Georgia, to camp for free with three other adults, her disabled son, two dogs and a pet bird.

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