Extremely dangerous Hurricane Florence bearing down on US
Image provided by NASA showing Hurricane Florence approaching the US East Coast on Sept. 10, 2018. EFE-EPA/ Nasa/ Editorial Use Only/No Sales
Image provided by the National Hurricane Center on Sept. 11, 2018, showing the five-day predicted storm track for Hurricane Florence as it approaches the US East Coast. EFE-EPA/NHC/Editorial Use Only/ No Sales
Miami, Sep 11 (efe-epa).- Hurricane Florence, despite the fact that in recent hours it has weakened slightly, is still packing sustained winds of 130 miles (215 km) per hour and remains an "extremely dangerous" Category 4 storm as it approaches the US eastern coastline, specifically the Carolinas.
In its 11 am advisory on Tuesday, the Miami-based National Hurricane Center said that the eye of Florence was located 390 miles (625 km) south of Bermuda and 905 mi. (1,455 km) east-southeast of Cape Fear, North Carolina, moving west-northwest at 16 mph (26 kph).
NHC experts warned that "life-threatening storm surge (is) possible along the coasts of North and South Carolina."
"Florence is expected to begin re-strengthening later (on Tuesday) and continue a slow strengthening trend for the next day or so. While some weakening is expected on Thursday, Florence is expected to be an extremely dangerous major hurricane through landfall," the NHC said.
A hurricane watch has been placed in effect for Edisto Beach South Carolina to the North Carolina-Virginia border, and a storm surge watch is in place for the same zone.
A storm surge watch "means there is a possibility of life-
threatening inundation, from rising water moving inland from the coastline, in the indicated locations during the next 48 hours," the NHC added.
The advisory noted that the storm is expected to make landfall on Thursday or Friday, although its preliminary effects in the target area and beyond will be felt long before that.
The storm surge will bring significant flooding of between two and four feet (60-120 cm) to the area between Edisto Beach and Murrells Inlet and up to six feet (1.8 meters) to the area between Murrells Inlet and Cape Fear.
A total of 15-20 inches (38-50 cm) of rain is expected, with isolated areas of up to 30 inches (76 cm), in parts of North Carolina, Virginia and the norther part of South Carolina through Saturday.
So far during this year's Atlantic hurricane season there have been nine tropical storms, of which five - Beryl, Chris, Helen, Isaac and Florence - have become hurricanes.