Published: Sun, September 16, 2018
Science | By Cecil Little

Trinidadians in the Carolinas prepare for Hurricane Florence

Trinidadians in the Carolinas prepare for Hurricane Florence

Earlier this week, more than 1 million people were ordered to evacuate the coastlines of Virginia, North Carolina, and SC.

"It truly is really about the whole size of this storm", National Hurricane Center Director Ken Graham told The Associated Press. He also said power could be out for a long time and suggested residents think now about what they will need power for.

He added: "This is a very unsafe storm".

Florence's winds dropped from a peak of 225km/h to 165km/h overnight, reducing the hurricane from a terrifying Category 4 to a 2. "I've got four cats inside the house". The NHS warned of "catastrophic" flash flooding from rainfall totals as high as 40 inches.

"Residents in the path of these devastating storms should comply with all evacuation orders and other emergency instructions".

From space: Tropical storm Florence hits US east coast
In New Bern, at the confluence of the Neuse and Trent rivers in North Carolina, the storm surge overwhelmed the town of 30,000. More than a million people along the coastlines of North Carolina, South Carolina and Virginia have been ordered to evacuate.

Despite the drop in maximum sustained winds, forecasters stress that this hurricane is not to be taken lightly.

According to the National Hurricane Centre, heavy rains with tropical-storm-force winds are spreading across the outer banks and coastal southeastern North Carolina.

But the most unsafe threat comes from Florence's rains and storm surge, which could bring flooding far inland.

"Hurricane Florence was uninvited but she's just about here anyway", he said at a news conference.

As of 5 a.m. EDT (0900g) it was centered about 205 miles (325 kilometers) east-southeast of Wilmington, North Carolina and about 250 miles (450 kilometers) east-southeast of Myrtle Beach, South Carolina, moving northwest at 15 mph (24 kph).

Hurricane Florence pounds the Carolinas
The city warns that people "may need to move up to the second story" but tells them to stay put as "we are coming to get you". More than 60 people had to be rescued in another town as a cinderblock motel collapsed at the height of the storm's fury.

In New Bern, North Carolina, the storm surge overwhelmed the town of 30,000 which is located at the confluence of the Neuse and Trent rivers. "Hurricane-force winds extend outward up to 80 miles (130 km) from the centre and tropical-storm-force winds extend outward up to 195 miles (315 km)". A warning is typically issued 36 hours before the anticipated first occurrence of tropical-storm-force winds, conditions that make outside preparations hard or risky.

Accuweather reported that its meteorologists "believe that the hurricane will stall and meander near the Carolina coast from Thursday night to Saturday".

A hurricane watch is in effect for Edisto Beach, SC, to South Santee River, SC. Emergency declarations were in force in Georgia, South and North Carolina, Virginia, Maryland and the District of Columbia.

"A storm surge warning means there is a danger of life-threatening inundation, from rising water moving inland from the coastline".

Despite all the warnings from numerous authorities, some residents say are planning to ride out the storm.

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Steering currents - around clear-weather high-pressure systems and stormy low-pressure systems - redirect hurricanes, with the clear-weather systems acting as walls that storms have to go around. Tropical Storm Olivia made a double landfall in Hawaii Wednesday morning, first in west Maui then Lanai, KHNL reports.

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