Gov. McMaster to order mandatory evacuations for SC coastal counties

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Here are the 5 AM EDT Key Messages for Hurricane #Florence.

Florence is forecasted to remain an "extremely unsafe major hurricane" through Thursday, the day when it's expected to reach the East Coast. As the forecast becomes clearer, Florence poses three challenges: coastal storm surge, strong winds and inland flooding that inundates rivers and low-lying ground.

Florence is approximately 410 miles south of Bermuda and 975 miles east-southeast of Cape Fear, North Carolina, as of 5 a.m. ET, according to the NHC.

As of Sunday night, the hurricane was centered in southeast Bermuda and moving west at 7 miles per hour. Now tracking in the Atlantic Ocean southeast of the US mainland, "A turn toward the northwest is forecast to occur late Wednesday night", the latest NHC dispatch stated.

The powerful Hurricane Florence threatened to bring "days and days" of rain and potentially deadly flooding to the USA southeast coast, North Carolina's governor warned on Tuesday, as some 1 million people were ordered to evacuate their homes. One model the weather service uses shows Florence making landfall along the southern Outer Banks, then interacting with a low-pressure trough moving across the Great Lakes that steers the storm back out to sea early next week, Wimberley said.

TODAY weather forecast Al Roker warned residents on the East Coast to prepare for tropical force winds and up to 20 inches of rain if the storm moves inland.

"There is an increased risk of two life-threatening impacts from Florence: storm surge from the coast and freshwater flooding from a prolonged heavy rainfall inland". Landfall may be Thurs. The hurricane is likely to bring risky surf and rip currents along the east coast.

Two other storms were spinning in the Atlantic.

"We do not want to risk one SC life in this hurricane", Governor Henry McMaster said at a news conference.

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"That scenario has a high probability of occurring in North Carolina and Virginia and possibly portions of neighboring states in the Southeast, Appalachians and mid-Atlantic late this week and this coming weekend", Sosnowski added.

"This morning, I received a full briefing from the Florida Division of Emergency Management on Hurricane Florence".

Florence went through significant strengthening and intensification Monday morning, starting the day as a Category 2 hurricane and strengthening to Category 4 by afternoon.

The National Hurricane Center said on Sunday night that the storm could remain powerful as it passes over the United States mainland, and could penetrate as far as Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania.

Meanwhile in the Pacific, Tropical Storm Olivia was close to Hawaii, where tropical storm warnings and watches are in effect, according to the Pacific Hurricane Center.

NOAA Hurricane Florence is forecast to hit the northeast coast later this week.

North Carolina Gov. Roy Cooper said his state was "in the bullseye" of the storm and urged people to "get ready now".

Still closer to Africa than North America, Hurricane Helene is predicted to head northeast in the Atlantic, then veer toward Europe, the center said.