Florence has weakened a bit over the past 24 hours, but it has also grown larger and will likely dump torrential rain over North and SC through Monday.
"Little change in strength is expected before the center reaches the coast, with weakening expected after the center moves inland", the briefing said.
A high-definition video camera outside the space station captured stark and sobering views of Hurricane Florence, at that time a Category 4 storm. Florence, the most ominous for United States residents, is expected to make landfall today.
"We're a little anxious about the storm surge so we came down to see what the river is doing now", Linda Smith, a 67-year-old retired non-profit director, said. He added later, "Most of the fatalities in these tropical systems is water". It's moving at 15 miles per hour, but as it nears the Carolina coast, it will dramatically slow down.
Hurricane conditions will likely hit the Carolina coast on Thursday night or early Friday. Some fluctuation in wind speeds are expected, and weakening forecast Thursday, but it's still expected to be a fierce storm triggering risky flooding.
In a press conference on Monday, South Carolina Gov. Henry McMaster said predations were made to accommodate 1 million people leaving the coast, a report by The State said. "And that will produce a lot of damage as well as prolong the beach erosion".
You can also review the South Carolina Emergency Management Division's checklist for preparation.
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Now, residents of North Carolina could see flash flooding and over a foot of rain as the storm centres itself over the state.
Some areas could see 40 inches of rain, and coupled with strong winds, the hurricane is shaping up to be a death trap. Officials are urging others in its path to follow suit, or prepare for the worst. This is when Hurricane Florence is expected to be closest to us. The forecast track has the storm stalling along the coast throughout Friday and into Saturday. The storm's 12-mph forward speed Thursday morning was a marked drop from Wednesday's 17-mph speeds.
"I ask all Georgians to join me in praying for the safety of our people and all those in the path of Hurricane Florence", Deal said.
Hurricane warnings are in effect for the South Santee River in SC to Duck, North Carolina, and Albemarle and Pamlico sounds.
And the storm is still expected to bring catastrophic winds, rain, storm surges and flooding, the National Hurricane Center briefing said.
Hurricane force winds will begin reaching the coast of the Carolinas by Thursday morning and the storm is not expected to leave the region in the next two days. The rest of South and North Carolina, including cities from Charlotte to Raleigh, can expect 6 to 12 inches of rain - and up to 2 feet in isolated areas, the NHC warned. Currently, the hurricane-force winds extend outward 80 miles from the center and tropical storm-force winds extend almost 200 miles from the eye. As of 5 a.m., its maximum wind speeds remain at 110 miles per hour as it started to ingest drier air, says FOX 13's meteorologist Tyler Eliasen, however, it also means Florence's wind field has grown larger. And disruptive, unsafe winds regardless of official category. Many shallowly rooted trees will be snapped or uprooted and block numerous roads.
He warned residents to be prepared for mass power outages that could last for days or weeks, echoing the sentiments shared by Duke Energy on Wednesday.