As South Carolina residents and emergency responders prepare for Hurricane Florence, the South Carolina National Guard has mobilized about 1,600 soldiers and airmen to prepare, respond and participate in advance of the major hurricane projected to make landfall near the Carolinas. "Now's the time to prepare".
While much of the focus ahead of Hurricane Florence has been on the coastal areas, weather experts are warning the Category 4 storm could bring catastrophic flooding and damaging winds to major cities well inland.
Aside from the storm surge and coastal flooding, expect colossal freshwater flooding as well.
Meanwhile, as scientists continue their debate, Hurricane Florence is set to cross seas a degree or more warmer than normal on its path to the US east coast.
"This is going to produce heavy rainfall, and it may not move very fast".
"There's just certain times of year when you just don't want to put waste on fields", said Mike Yoder, an associate director and coordinator for emergency-response programs at North Carolina State University Extension.
The storm was getting bigger and better organized and is expected to continue to strengthen for the next day or so, the NHC said.
The last Category 4 hurricane to plough directly into North Carolina was Hazel in 1954, a devastating storm that killed 19 people and destroyed some 15,000 homes. A hurricane watch was in effect for Edisto Beach, South Carolina, to Virginia's southern border, and the first hurricane-force winds arriving late Thursday.
"This storm is going to get stronger before it makes landfall", CNN meteorologist Chad Myers said. With little wind shear to pull the storm apart, hurricane-strength winds have been expanding to 40 miles (64 kilometres) from the eye of the storm, and tropical-storm-force winds 150 miles from the centre.
Other counties along North Carolina's coast are also issuing evacuation warnings, while SC has ordered the evacuation of all coastal areas beginning at noon on Tuesday.
In the worst-case scenario, Florence could become the harshest hurricane to hit the country in terms of financial pain.
It includes transporting supplies, equipment, fuel, or people to and from the areas hit by the storm. For example, the seas off of Wilmington, North Carolina have risen 7.5 inches since 1935, according to NOAA.
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The problem is, much of the Carolinas are already saturated from rainfall.
The new computer model's resolution is "one of the highest yet achieved" for a global climate model that captures the entire Earth and both its atmosphere and oceans, said Emanuel in an email.
"This paper doesn't really say what we've had so far, if there's a trend", said Bhatia.
The decision brings the total to three games involving ranked teams that won't be played this weekend due to the Category 4 storm.
"Well-built framed homes can sustain severe damage with loss of most of the roof structure and/or some exterior walls". Fallen trees and power poles will isolate residential areas.
Power companies warned residents may be without power for days or weeks.
Freight haulers need to be prepared for many washed out roadways and damage to rail infrastructure across this multi-state area.
A Category 4 storm has sustained winds from 130 to 156 miles per hour. Florence will likely weaken to a Category 1 storm Friday or Saturday.
The hurricane now brings winds of up to 140 miles per hour and is expected to be the strongest storm the Carolinas have seen in almost 30 years, according to Reuters.
Meanwhile, the Lesser Antilles are watching Tropical Storm Isaac, which was downgraded from a hurricane earlier Tuesday.
Many people in the Southeast and Mid-Atlantic probably have not experienced a storm of the potential magnitude of Florence.