'It's just a heck of a storm,' Florence hurricane hunter says

Charlene Craig
September 11, 2018

Florence had maximum sustained winds of 128km/h, making it a Category 1 storm on the five-level Saffir-Simpson hurricane scale. One, Hurricane Florence, is already cause 85-mph winds expected to become an "extremely dangerous" major hurricane. That means, she said, that the Wilmington region is going to be affected by what she said is going to be a major hurricane that could reach category 4 strength, which means maximum sustained winds of 130 to 156 miles per hour. "But we are not going to gamble with the lives of the people of SC".

The governors of North and SC and Virginia have all declared states of emergency ahead of the approaching storm. The move will allow the state to use the National Guard for preparations and recovery if necessary.

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.

"We are preparing for the worst, and of course hoping for the best", South Carolina Gov. Henry McMaster said, as reported by CNN. "We know we can´t play around with this", said Jennifer Oosterwyk, who owns the Sugar Britches boutique on Holden Beach and lives in nearby Wilmington. It will continue to strengthen and likely upgrade to a category 4 by Tuesday.

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With the state of emergency declared and Hurricane Florence, a category 4 hurricane, headed toward the east coast, the University of SC is going to have some decisions to make, especially with a home football game against Marshall on Saturday night.

The Atlantic hurricane season officially begins on June 1, and this year was forecasted to have a slightly above-average number of storms. That information will help public officials assess storm damage, discern between wind and flood damage, and improve computer models used to forecast future floods.

By noon EDT on Monday, Florence had top sustained winds of 130 miles per hour (195 kph).

These evacuations, a part of Executive Order 2018-29, are mandatory and include Beaufort and Dorchester counties beginning at noon Tuesday, Sept. 11. The state's emergency management agency said it is "preparing for the possibility of a large-scale disaster".

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Hurricane Helene, was spinning in the Atlantic off West Africa's Cape Verde islands with 85-mph (140-kph) winds on Monday, but did not appear to pose an immediate threat to land.

First, here's a map from the National Hurricane Center showing a forecast cone and coastal watches and warnings.

"A warm ocean is the fuel that powers hurricanes, and Florence will be moving over waters where temperatures are peaking near 85 degrees (30 Celsius), hurricane specialist Eric Blake wrote". While Helene's outlook calls for it to head into the open Atlantic, Isaac will probably hit the Caribbean's Lesser Antilles Islands Thursday and potentially brush Puerto Rico, still recovering from last year's Maria, as a strong tropical storm later.

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