Hurricane Florence is no Hugo. It looks worse

'This is a big storm': Results could be catastrophic

Florence exploded into a potentially catastrophic hurricane Monday as it closed in on North and SC, carrying winds up to 140 miles per hour (220 kph) and water that could wreak havoc over a wide stretch of the eastern United States later this week.

Governor Nathan Deal declared a state of emergency for the state of Georgia: "in light of the storm's forecasted southward track after making landfall".

For a swath of the North Carolina shore from Cape Fear to Cape Lookout, the storm surge could range from 9-13 feet, the NHC said.

So far, more than one million people along the coasts of North and SC and southern Virginia have fled. He underlined the point that even if you call 911, there is a chance rescue services may not be able to get to you. "This is a storm that is historic, maybe once in a lifetime".

"It's going to destroy homes", said Jeff Byard, an official at the Federal Emergency Management Agency.

In a videotaped message from the White House, President Donald Trump said the government was fully prepared for Florence but urged people to "get out of its way".

Another FEMA spokesman said: "I need to re-emphasise this is a unsafe storm".

It is predicted to stall even more off the coast of the Carolinas before scraping down the U.S. east coast and moving inland before the weekend. There are concerns that it could knock out power for weeks. So you wonder what that's going to be like.

Crabtree Creek frequently overflows its banks in heavy rainstorms, so major flooding is expected from Florence, he said.

Boeing Co suspended work on Tuesday at the SC plant where it assembles 787 widebody jetliners, and a Volvo automobile plant in South Carolina's evacuation zone was also closed, company officials said. The Gamecocks announced Wednesday afternoon that Saturday's scheduled game against Marshall in Williams-Brice Stadium has been canceled due to the potential impact of Hurricane Florence.

Closing in with terrifying winds of 130 miles per hour (215 kph) and potentially catastrophic rain and storm surge, Florence is expected to blow ashore Saturday morning along the North Carolina-South Carolina line, the National Hurricane Center said.

Parts of North Carolina could get 20 inches of rain, if not more, with as much as 10 inches elsewhere in the state and in Virginia, parts of Maryland and Washington, D.C.

The last time the USA capital declared a state of emergency was in January 2016 when a winter storm dubbed "Snowzilla" blanketed the capital region in knee-deep snow. Eventually, Florence will veer north into the Appalachian Mountains, bringing soaking rains to Virginia and western North Carolina, before sputtering out late next week near DE and Maryland, the FWS reported.

Michael Kennedy, an engineer at Boeing, said he planned to leave on Tuesday for his parents' home in Atlanta, Georgia.

Gloria Harris said she didn't know her home at the Brentwood West Apartments complex, near Marsh Creek in north Raleigh, was flood-prone.

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