Hurricane Florence from space: photos of the hurricane showed in the NASA

Hurricane Florence from space: photos of the hurricane showed in the NASA”

The National Hurricane Center downgraded it to a tropical storm but said life-threatening storm surges and catastrophic freshwater flooding were expected over portions of North and SC.

At 11 a.m., Hurricane Florence was located about 485 miles southeast of Wilmington, North Carolina and about 520 miles east-southeast of Myrtle Beach, South Carolina.

Georgia joined four other coastal states issuing an emergency declaration as forecasts showed Florence dumping historic amounts of torrential rain on the southern state. By Sunday, Florence will have dissipated to a tropical storm, and by Monday morning it will be a tropical depression. In South Carolina, close to the Georgia line, Beaufort County emergency chief Neil Baxley told residents they need to prepare again for the worst just in case.

The White House said on Friday President Donald Trump would travel to the region next week unless his visit would disrupt cleanup and rescue efforts.

Weekend sporting events have already been canceled, with possibly more to come.

North Carolina Governor Roy Cooper predicted tens of thousands of homes and businesses would be flooded in his state.

By late afternoon, the centre of the storm was about 25 miles northeast of Myrtle Beach, South Carolina, with maximum sustained winds of 70 mph.

A hurricane warning for the coast from Duck, North Carolina and the Albemarle and Pamlico Sounds, to the South Santee River, South Carolina.

Abigail Darlington, covers the city of Charleston for the South Carolina Post and Courier.

On Wednesday morning, Florence was extending hurricane-force winds outward up to 70 miles from its center, with tropical-storm-force winds up to 175 miles outward. Many major roads and arteries have reversed traffic flow to help residents evacuate quickly.

The NHC said the first tropical storm-force winds of at least 39 miles per hour (63 kph) would hit the region early on Thursday with the storm's center reaching the coast Friday.

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 40 inches (1m) of rain, to Virginia. Some of these reactors - including Duke Energy's Brunswick and Harris nuclear plants in North Carolina and Dominion Energy's Surry plant in Virginia - may be directly in the hurricane's path, Reuters reported. Then it is likely to hover along the coast on Saturday, pushing up to 13ft of storm surge.

Life-threatening storm surges of up to 13 feet (3.9 meters) were also forecast in some areas of North Carolina along with the possibility of tornadoes.

A Category 4 storm could devastate the East Coast, simulation shows. Isaac could bring heavy rainfall to Martinique, Dominica and Guadeloupe.

Greg Postel, hurricane and storm specialist for The Weather Channel.

Almost 1000 prisoners in SC will not be moved from their cells, despite a mandatory evacuation order in the area.

Another disturbance is swirling around in the Gulf of Mexico.

Not everyone was taking Florence too seriously: About two dozen locals gathered on Thursday night behind the boarded-up windows of The Barbary Coast bar as Florence blew into Wilmington.

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