Hurricane Florence: Georgia Governor declares state of EMERGENCY for all 159 counties

Hurricane Florence: Georgia Governor declares state of EMERGENCY for all 159 counties

Hurricane Florence: Georgia Governor declares state of EMERGENCY for all 159 counties

Hurricane Florence, growing in size despite its weakening winds, churned ever closer to the US East Coast on Wednesday as evacuations expanded south from the Carolinas into Georgia to counter the threat of deadly high seas and calamitous floods.

A hurricane warning was in effect from the South Santee River, S.C., to Duck, N.C., and in the Albemarle and Pamlico sounds.

As of 11 p.m., Florence was centered about 85 miles (135 kilometers) east-southeast of Wilmington, its forward movement slowed to 5 mph (7 kph).

Late Wednesday, the storm had weakened slightly to a Category 2 hurricane with winds of 110 miles per hour (175 kph) as it approaches the North and SC coasts. The Wilmington area can now expect 9-to-13-foot storm surges if Florence's peak impact coincides with high tide, Brunswick County coastal areas west of Southport can expect 6-to-9-foot surges.

"I'm very concerned about this storm", Cooper said.

Hurricane Florence: Residents urged to rush as ‘unprecedented disaster’ looms
Landfall was expected sometime late Thursday and FEMA officials said Wednesday was the last day for people to get out safely. President Donald Trump declared states of emergency for North and SC and Virginia, opening the way for federal aid.

Florence is expected to reach Wilmington around 2pm tomorrow as a Category 3 hurricane before turning away from its north-west trajectory and heading south-west.

Governor Deal said yesterday: "The state is mobilising all available resources to ensure public safety ahead of Hurricane Florence".

Duke Energy told The Associated Press that damage from Hurricane Florence could cut off electricity to three-quarters of some 4 million customers in the Carolinas.

Florence's weakening as it neared the coast created tension between some who left home and authorities who anxious that the storm could still be deadly. Many coastal towns have already instituted mandatory evacuation orders.

"It's going to coming roaring up to the coast Thursday night and say 'I'm not sure I really want to do this and I'll just take a tour of the coast and decide where I want to go inland, '" said Jeff Masters, meteorology director of the private Weather Underground.

Carolinas Brace for Extremely Dangerous Hurricane Florence
North and SC and Virginia have already declared states of emergency , and officials have begun evacuations in North Carolina . Aides say they are applying lessons from last year's spate of storms to an expected repeat season of destruction.

North Carolina has roughly 2,100 industrial-scale pork farms containing more than 9 million hogs. Hurricane-force winds extended 80 miles (130 kilometers) from its center, and tropical-storm-force winds up to 195 miles (315 kilometers).

The National Weather Service announced around 3:40 p.m. Wednesday that Tropical Storm Joyce had formed in the Atlantic, leaving the disturbance approaching the Texas Gulf Coast still unnamed. Workers are being brought in from the Midwest and Florida to help in the storm's aftermath, it said.

"We're just trying to plan for the future here, not having a house for an extended period of time", David Garrigus said.

Melody Rawson evacuated her first-floor apartment in Myrtle Beach and arrived at Atlanta Motor Speedway in Hampton, Georgia, to camp for free with three other adults, her disabled son, two dogs and a pet bird. "Also, a little creepy".

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