Hurricane Florence is nearing the southeast U.S. coast, and the National Hurricane Center is providing frequent updates about the storm’s movements. Here are details from the latest update from the NOAA as of Wednesday, September 12, at 5 p.m. Eastern (4 p.m. Central.) The next update will be at 11 p.m. Eastern, and an intermediate update will be at 8 p.m. Eastern. You can read the full updates on the NOAA’s website here.
Hurricane Florence’s Location, Coordinates & Movement
As of 5 p.m., Florence was located at 30.9 N, 72.5 W. It is about 385 miles (615 km) southeast of Wilmington, North Carolina, and about 420 miles (675 km) ESE of Myrtle Beach, South Carolina.
It’s moving NW or 315 degrees at 16 mph (26 km/h.)
The National Hurricane Center noted the following at 5 p.m.: “Florence ismoving toward the northwest near 16 mph (26 km/h), and this general motion, accompanied by a gradual decrease in forward speed, is expected to continue through Saturday. On the forecast track, the center of Florence will move over the southwestern Atlantic Ocean between Bermuda and the Bahamas tonight, and approach the coast of North Carolina or South Carolina in the hurricane warning area on Thursday and Friday, and move slowly near the coastline through Saturday.”
Hurricane Florence’s Wind Strength, Pressure, & Rainfall
The storm’s maximum sustained winds as of 5 p.m. are 120 mph, NOAA noted. This means the storm has weakened slightly and is now a Category 3 instead of a Category 4. NOAA notes: “Some fluctuations in strength will be possible through Thursday morning. Although slow weakening is expected to begin by late Thursday, Florence is forecast to be an extremely dangerous major hurricane when it nears the U.S. coast late Thursday and Friday.”
In other words, even though the storm has weakened, that’s no reason to stop being cautious. A Category 3 storm is still very dangerous, and the storm might strengthen again before making landfall.
The storm’s minimum central pressure is 949 MB or 28.03 inches.
Hurricane-force winds extend outward up to 70 miles from the center, and tropical storm force winds extend outward up to 915 miles from the center. Hurricane-force winds may reach the coast within the warning area by late Thursday or Friday. Tropical storm strength winds will be felt on Thursday.
Florence is expected to produce heavy and excessive rainfall, NOAA noted. In coastal North Carolina, this could be 20 to 30 inches, isolated up to 40 inches in some areas, which could lead to catastrophic flooding.
In South Carolina, western, and northern Carolina, rain could be 5 to 10 inches, isolated up to 20 inches. In the Appalachians and mid-Atlantic states, this could be 3 to 6 inches, isolated up to 12 inches.
Current Watches & Warnings
According to the National Hurricane Center, the following warnings and watches are in effect.
South Santee River, South Carolina to Duck, North Carolina
Albermarle and Pamlico Sounds
According to NHC: “A Hurricane Warning means that hurricane conditions are expected somewhere within the warning area. A warning is typically issued …read more