HURRICANE FLORENCE EYES THE UNITED STATES
Category 4 Hurricane Florence continues to churn in the open waters of the Atlantic ocean Tuesday evening. The latest data from the National Hurricane Center shows that the peak sustained winds are currently 140 mph.
The latest track from the National Hurricane Center brings the center of circulation ashore in southern North Carolina around midday Friday. This is a significant change from just 24 hours ago, when Florence was projected to make a landfall in the United State on Thursday. It is still expected to impact the coast as a major hurricane (Category 3 to Category 5 status), meaning that sustained winds will be at a minimum 111 mph.
Right now, the eye of Florence is about 775 miles southeast of the Carolina coastline.
Hurricane warnings have been issued from the northern portion of the South Carolina coast and for much of the North Carolina coast. Hurricane watches are shown in pink.
Besides the winds, serious rainfall is expected to fall as a result of the impacts from Hurricane Florence. Computer model guidance suggests that over 20+ could fall in the hardest hit areas and the National Weather Service says isolated areas of 30 inches of rain is not out of the question.
Extremely high winds, flooding, storm surge, and a few isolated tornadoes will all be possible as Florence comes ashore. Beyond Major Hurricane Florence, there are two other active storms in the Atlantic basin. Tropical storm Isaac is forecast to move to the west in the coming days and Hurricane Helene is forecast to make a right turn and head north. Both systems will need to be watched in the coming days.
Check back for the latest updates as the week progresses.
--Chief Weather Forecaster Joe Strus
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