Florence regains hurricane strength, on track to hit U.S. East Coast

Here's what David Epstein is saying about Hurricane Florence

Coastal hazards are a concern - rip currents, storm surge, flooding and damaging winds - but inland freshwater flooding is also a concern, so everyone from SC to the Mid-Atlantic region should closely monitor Florence and have hurricane plan in place.

It is not a threat to the USA or Caribbean at this time.

On top of Irma and Maria, powerful category 4 hurricane Harvey inflicted $125billion worth of damage, mostly from catastrophic flooding in Houston, Texas, between August and September past year.

A tropical storm watch has been issued for Hawaii, Maui and Oahu.

The center of Hurricane Olivia is located near latitude 21.7 north, longitude 148.0 west, about 480 miles ENE of Hilo.

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"Satellite imagery indicates that the maximum sustained winds have increased to near 105 miles per hour (165 km/h) with higher gusts", the NHC said in its latest advisory. A turn toward the west-northwest is forecast to occur by Monday. Rivers are high, and the storm will be moving slowly when it arrives, exacerbating the situation, Rossi told USA TODAY. Most of the area should expect a couple inches while some spots could get more. They warned that Florence could slow or stall after coming ashore, with some forecasting models showing it could unload a foot or two of rain in places, causing devastating inland flooding. Emergency officials say they're keeping a close eye on the forecast and where to move resources to respond to the storm. Hurricane damage can go beyond the coast as heavy rain and strong winds are expected inland.

Florence is a category 3 hurricane on the Saffir-Simpson Hurricane Wind Scale. It is expected to accelerate during the next 36 hours and head into the eastern Caribbean Sea by Thursday.

The storm's center was 720 miles (1,160 km) southeast of Bermuda at 5 p.m. EDT on Sunday, and on a track to pass between Bermuda and the Bahamas on Wednesday, the NHC said. Forecasters predicted it would become a unsafe Category 4 storm before a possible landfall Friday. It's expected to strengthen through Tuesday before beginning to weaken. But small storms tend to grow and shrink more rapidly than large storms. A west-northwestward motion with an increase in forward speed is expected by Monday, and that motion is forecast to continue through mid-week.

Showers and thunderstorms over the northwestern Caribbean Sea and western Cuba, associated with a surface trough, are showing some signs of organization (marked as an orange "X" in the above map). Where, when, and even if a tropical cyclone forms has yet to be answered, but it still looks to bring us another dose of tropical moisture that could up our rain chances for the weekend and early next week.

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