Hurricane Florence threatens millions on US East Coast

As Carolinas bear down for Hurricane Florence, it looks as if Maryland will miss worst of storm

As Carolinas bear down for Hurricane Florence, it looks as if Maryland will miss worst of storm

"We could maybe get some outer bands or very, very outer bands of the hurricane", said Jeremy Geiger, a weather service meteorologist.

Panovich: Right now it looks like landfall is going to occur sometime early Friday morning between, I would say, 4 a.m. and probably about 8 a.m., but it might actually never make it all the way in.

The National Hurricane Center's latest predictions Wednesday had Florence hovering off Southeast shores for more than two days before making landfall near the North Carolina/South Carolina border, perhaps not until Saturday. Shelters in the city were filling and some people were being bused inland to Raleigh, even though some residents there were told they might have to evacuate because of flooding. More than 2,000 Florida utility workers were also sent to help restore power after the storm hits. Nathan Deal issued an emergency declaration for the entire state to ease regulations on trucks hauling gasoline and relief supplies. Experts are saying Florence, a "monster", could be one of the most powerful storms to ever hit the East Coast.

All eyes are on Hurricane Florence as it barrels towards the Carolinas.

Florence's nighttime winds were down to 115 miles per hour (185 kph) from a high of 140 miles per hour (225 kph), and the Category 4 storm fell to a Category 3, with a further slow weakening expected as the storm nears the coast.

It's expected to stall around the South Carolina/North Carolina coastline into Friday night and then drift toward Myrtle Beach, South Carolina. It is an extremely, dangerous, life-threatening, historic hurricane, ' said North Carolina Gov. Roy Cooper.

"This rainfall would produce catastrophic flash flooding and significant river flooding", the hurricane center says. "This is going to be a Mike Tyson punch to the Carolina coast". This storm is a slow-moving mammoth and will linger for days on the coast, heavily affecting not only North and SC but also Georgia and parts of Virginia before moving further inland, causing devastation to entire states throughout the weekend.

The fire department in Carolina Beach was sounding one final alarm Wednesday, urging residents to evacuate the island before Hurricane Florence makes landfall.

A state of emergency has also been declared in Maryland, North Carolina, South Carolina, Virginia and Washington.

The category four hurricane is set to bring with it heavy rains and winds of up to 225 kilometres per hour.

The path of Hurricane Florence has changed since Cooper made that statement Tuesday.

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