Boeing evacuated several new 787-10 Dreamliner jets from its factory in North Charleston, South Carolina, to protect them from the storm. Ten million people are now under some kind of weather advisory.
More than 1 million people have been ordered to evacuate and authorities urged them to get going before the streets become inundated.
Cooper and other state officials repeatedly said Thursday motorists should avoid flooded roads at all costs, saying people driving through standing or moving water caused the most deaths during Hurricane Matthew in 2016.
The powerful hurricane bearing down on the east coast of the U.S. has led airlines to cancel more than 1,245 flights and waive change fees for travellers affected by the storm, USA Today reports.
Rockfall at Navagio Beach in Zakynthos injures tourists
O'Connell described the piece of rock that fell as being as big as a four-storey building, crashing down onto the beach . Coast guard officials told the Evening Standard that those hurt had not sustained any life-threatening injuries.
In the North Carolina town of Rodanthe, on Hatteras Island, Rebecca Well Hooper shot video of the pier early Thursday afternoon.
"As the rain pours down during the storm, inland evacuations may become necessary and the time for completing such tasks will come to an end as travel becomes increasing hard and unsafe", Sosnowski said. "We go through a lot of these hurricane scares throughout the years", Wilmington Mayor Bill Saffo said.
North Carolina Governor Roy Cooper said, 'The time to prepare is nearly over.
As it stands, Florence is now a Category two hurricane, with maximum sustained winds of 177 km/h.
Life-threatening storm surge and rainfall are expected.
MPs to reject British PM's Brexit deal: ex-minister
Barnier refused to comment on the divisions in the governing British Conservative Party over Brexit. The ERG is unveiling its own alternative plan for tackling the Irish border issue on Wednesday.
A hurricane watch is in effect for Edisto Beach South Carolina to South Santee River South Carolina.
"Just because the wind speeds came down, the intensity of this storm came down to a Category 2, please do not let your guard down", said FEMA Administrator Brock Long.
The storm's intensity held at about 90 miles per hour (144 kph), and it appeared that the north side of the eye was the most risky place to be as Florence moved ashore.
Forecasters anxious the storm's damage will be all the worse if it lingers on the coast.
Trump campaign chief Manafort will help Mueller investigation in plea deal
Mr Manafort would become the most prominent former Trump campaign official to plead guilty in Mueller's investigation. Trump's former fixer and lawyer, Michael Cohen, admitted financial crimes and is helping federal prosecutors in NY .
The Miami-based center said in an update at 11 p.m. EDT Thursday that the storm's eye was about 50 miles (80 kilometers) south of Morehead, City, North Carolina. "Also, a little creepy".