Science

USA stocks to watch as Hurricane Florence approaches

USA stocks to watch as Hurricane Florence approaches”

Top winds for Hurricane Florence grew to 105 miles (169 kilometers) per hour as it pushed westward toward the U.S. East Coast, a major threat to homes, agriculture and the waning tourist season.

Hurricane Florence is plowing toward the East Coast as a Category 4 storm with a 500-mile wing span, forcing dire warnings and mandatory evacuations - including the entire coastline of SC and parts of Virginia and North Carolina.

"All indications are that Florence will be an extremely risky Category 4 hurricane while it moves over the western Atlantic toward the southeastern United States", the hurricane centre said.

Hurricane Florence, the most powerful storm to menace the Carolina coast in almost three decades, intensified into a Category 4 hurricane on Monday, prompting evacuations of more than 1 million people to higher ground.

The center of Florence is expected to move over the southwestern Atlantic, between Bermuda and the Bahamas, over the next few days and bear down on the North Carolina and SC coastlines on Thursday.

The U.S. Navy is sending almost 30 of its Virginia-based ships out to sea as Hurricane Florence barrels toward the Atlantic Coast.

Florence is likely to bring a deadly coastal storm surge to the Carolinas and Virginia, with "staggering" rainfall that may extend hundreds of miles inland and cause flash flooding across parts of the mid-Atlantic region, NHC Director Ken Graham said in an evening webcast.

Hurricane Florence on Sunday had winds moving at 75 mph, and was 750 miles southeast of Bermuda, moving west at 6 mph.

Isaac is expected to gain strength in the next day or two before beginning to weaken mid-week when it approaches the Lesser Antilles.

Helene - now just southeast of the Cabo Verde islands off the African coast - had winds of 85 miles per hour, and was expected to turn northwest and then north into the open Atlantic by midweek, the NHC said. It warned people at the coast and inland from SC to the mid-Atlantic region to monitor the storm's progress closely and ensure they have a hurricane plan in place. "I am declaring a state of emergency so that we can begin to prepare state assets, and I encourage Virginians to monitor forecasts and make their own preparations now", Northam said.

Current estimates call for seven to ten inches of rain across Southeastern North Carolina between Wednesday night and Friday night.

Olivia is expected to move west through Monday before turning west-southwest late Monday and early Tuesday local time. Hurricane Floyd was a Category 4 storm before it hit Florida, traveled up the coast and struck Cape Fear as a strong Category 2 storm. Models show the storm reaching Category 4 intensity within 48 hours, with winds of 130 mph to 156 mph, hurricane specialist Eric Blake said in a forecast discussion.

While the track of Tropical Storm Florence is still uncertain, it appears increasingly likely that Virginia may see significant impacts from this storm this week. It was moving west at 10 km/h. That means sustained winds of at least 130 miles per hour and expectations of catastrophic damage, the hurricane center says. (Also important note, a Category 5 Hurricane has never made landfall on North Carolina) Florence is unique however because it's nearly taking a beeline course to the coastline.

"Traffic was backed up for about 9 miles (14 km) in places", said Paul Jones, a retiree who owns a vacation home on Hatteras Island.

Each line represents a computer model's best "guess" of where the center of the storm will go. Florence has been moving more toward the west and slightly northwest, potentially making direct landfall coming in from the east. Isaac's forward movement was accelerating on a path to cross into the lower Caribbean on Thursday. Weakening is forecast to begin by the middle of the week.



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