Hurricane Florence Prompts Mandatory Evacuations In Virginia

Satellite image of Florence in the Atlantic Ocean taken on Sept. 9

Modal Trigger Satellite image of Florence in the Atlantic Ocean taken on Sept. 9. Reuters

"Florence is expected to be an extremely risky major hurricane through Thursday", the NHC said in a bulletin.

Florence is still on track to make a late Thursday landfall somewhere between Charleston, South Carolina and the Outter Banks.

Gov. Northam declared a State of Emergency for the Commonwealth Saturday, one day after Gov. Roy Cooper declared a State of Emergency for North Carolina.

More than a million people are expected to flee low-lying areas, as SC and Virginia ordered mandatory evacuations of coastal areas starting on Tuesday. Earlier Monday, coastal communities in North Carolina ordered evacuations, and SC ordered evacuations for its entire coastline.

The formidable storm is packing maximum sustained winds of 140 miles per hour, making it a Category 4 Hurricane on the Saffir-Simpson scale, and it is expected to strengthen further.

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Meanwhile, Pentagon spokesman, Col. Robert Manning said, "Northern Command is spending an advanced team to the emergency operations center in Raleigh, North Carolina Monday to conduct an assessment and coordinate with federal and state partners". The forecast continues to call for Florence to slam ashore as a major - Category 3 or stronger - storm before weakening slightly, but still as hurricane, as it heads inland.

"We know this evacuation order I'm issuing is going to be inconvenient", McMaster said of the decision, which affects over 1m residents.

While in Myrtle Beach, South Carolina, many are getting ready for life off the grid, buying up generators, flashlights, water and lots of plywood to cover up windows.

By 11 p.m. Monday, Florence was centered about 1,170 miles (1,085 km) east-southeast of Cape Fear, North Carolina, and moving west at 13 mph (20 kph).

"It's scary to all of us".

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Initial predictions didn't quite pan out this year - so far, we've had nine named storms and five hurricanes. "Please be prepared, be careful and be SAFE!"

A BP service station and mini-mart in Wilmington ran out of gasoline for about two hours on Monday as motorists rushed to fill up their tanks.

US President Donald Trump has cancelled a political rally planned for Friday in Jackson, Mississippi, over safety concerns related to Florence, his campaign said. It said about 750 military personnel would be designated to provide support.

Even the Navy was steeling for impact as the US Fleet Forces Command ordered all ships moored in the area to move farther out to the open Atlantic, away from Florence's path. "Florence is forecast to bring devastating rainfall and flooding from the coast to the Appalachians". He warned people living inland of flooding and power cuts.

"There is still time to prepare but the window to do so is starting to close", he said. If you live in the southeastern United States, you need to devise an annual plan for hurricane season that is more robust than the one you had in years past, as it's clear that the governments and corporations of the world refuse to address the root cause of climate change: mankind's economic and political priorities.

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