'Time running out' for residents to escape Hurricane Florence

Hurricane Florence evacuations

Richmond has moved its scheduled home football game this week against St. Francis to the Red Flash's field in Pennsylvania because of Hurricane Florence.

Motorists streamed inland on roads converted to one-way evacuation routes as about 1.7 million people in three U.S. states were warned to get out of the way of Hurricane Florence, a hair-raising storm taking dead aim at the Carolinas with 130mph winds and potentially ruinous rains.

As of 8 a.m. ET, Florence was 530 miles southeast of Cape Fear, N.C., moving west-northwest at 17 mph, the National Hurricane Center says.

Tropical disturbance Invest 95L as of Wednesday morning.

States up and down the East Coast have a great potential for severe weather.

About 1.7 million people across the three states affected - North Carolina, South Carolina and Virginia - have been told to leave their homes ahead of the storm's arrival.

We will remind, the government of Washington declared a state of emergency in connection with approach of hurricane of the fourth category "Nightingale".

Computer models predict more than 3 feet of rain in the eastern part of the state, a fertile low-lying plain veined by brackish rivers with a propensity for escaping their banks.

"This is going to be a Mike Tyson punch to the Carolina coast", he warned.

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Hurricane Florence has inundated U.S. coastal streets with ocean water and left tens of thousands without power, and forecasters say conditions will only worsen as the hulking storm slogs inland. Rescue swimmers and other ground crew members will head straight to Raleigh, North Carolina, Macy said. In North Carolina, Cooper says, "2,800 soldiers will be on active duty, joined by even more on standby".

The shift south and west will encompass more of SC and western North Carolina.

Hurricane-force winds were blowing 80 miles from its centre, and tropical storm force winds reached up to 195 miles from the eye.

To hasten evacuations from coastal SC, officials reversed the flow of traffic on some highways so all major roads led away from shore. So just how widespread will its impact be? North Carolina alone could get from 20 to 30 inches, with isolated spots possibly receiving 40 inches. This will allow Florence to continually batter the same areas for hours on end and allow storm surge to inundate the coast through multiple high tide cycles.

"Historical rainfall amounts from #Florence are possible with UNPRECEDENTED flooding", according to the National Weather Service office in Newport and Morehead City, on North Carolina's coast.

Farther to the east, Hurricane Helene is now a Category 2 storm, but it's expected to curve harmlessly northward and weaken in the central Atlantic. Tropical Storm Isaac is heading westward toward the central Lesser Antilles, but is a bit weaker, with Guadeloupe, Martinique and Dominica now under tropical storm, not hurricane, warnings.

The storm was expected to move across parts of southeastern North Carolina and eastern SC on Friday and Saturday, then head north over the western Carolinas and central Appalachian Mountains early next week, the NHC said.

Large surf at Atlantic Beach, NC as Hurricane Florence nears.

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