Thursday, 21 February, 2019

Hurricane Florence strengthens to Category 4, SC coast to be evacuated

Walker Townsend at right from the Isle of Palms S.C. fills a sand bag while Dalton Trout in center holds the bag at the Isle of Palms municipal lot where the city was giving away free sand in preparation for Hurricane Florence at the Isle of Palms S Hurricane Florence strengthens to Category 4, SC coast to be evacuated
Theresa Hayes | 14 September, 2018, 07:13

In South Carolina, McMaster's evacuation orders affect about 1 million residents and tourists across eight low-lying counties.

And in both states evacuations already underway.

Lining up behind Florence, Isaac was about 1,150 miles (1,855 kilometers) east of the Windward Islands with top winds of 75 mph (120 kph) early Monday, moving west at 14 mph (22 kph).

By way of comparison, the maximum intensity of Hurricane Maria, the storm system which path of destruction left nearly 3,000 people dead in Puerto Rico, was 277.8 km/h, (150 knots), the NHC said. Myrtle Beach Mayor Brenda Bethune urged people to secure their homes but said it was too early to know if evacuations will be ordered.

"We want to make sure that we get the best data going to the National Hurricane Center. and to emergency managers and to the media so we can get people out of the way", Flaherty said.

Lanes will be reversed on four highways, including USA 501, starting at noon Tuesday, McMaster said. "A decision on lane reversals in Beaufort County will be made on Tuesday, McMaster said". The state's governor, Roy Cooper, says there are three threats - ocean surges along the coast, strong winds and island flooding. "We will experience a significant and sustained rainfall event with flooding".

State emergencies have already been declared in North Carolina, South Carolina, Virginia and Maryland.

In South Carolina, McMaster ordered the state's entire coastline evacuated starting at noon Tuesday. "If the storm turns north toward D.C., more airlines will be impacted".

Florence's large size - tropical storm force winds extend 170 miles from the center in all directions - means its fury will arrive long before the center of the storm comes ashore, Graham said.

The Isle of Palms is giving away free sand in preparation for Hurricane Florence.

We will continue to update this story as more news comes in and as the storm approaches.

U.S. airlines are allowing passengers to change their travel plans as Hurricane Florence threatens the east coast. "But on rare occasions, the steering patterns can line up such that a storm slips into a dead zone between troughs and ridges".

Manning adds hundreds of troops are ready to deploy at a moments notice, while the Federal Emergency Management Agency is setting up operations at Fort AP Hill, in Virginia. Also included in Southwest's relaxed rebooking policy were the Washington-area's busy Reagan National and Dulles airports.

President Donald Trump is canceling a campaign rally in advance of Hurricane Florence's landfall.

"We here in North Carolina are bracing for a hard hit", Cooper said Monday. Gen. Robert E. Livingston Jr., head of the National Guard.

The Transportation Department also has more than 3,000 employees ready to deploy, and more than 440 additional state law enforcement officers have been moved to the coast.

People were preparing for the worst, even if they didn't evacuate. I'll take my chance with the hurricane.