3 million could lose power when Hurricane Florence hits

3 million could lose power when Hurricane Florence hits

Florence's weakening as it neared the coast created tension between some who left home and authorities who anxious that the storm could still be deadly. A monster. A once-in-a-lifetime storm.

Shortly after the news that the storm has changed course to affect Georgia after landfall, President Donald Trump took to Twitter to motivate citizens of the state to prepare for the risky weather.

"Please be prepared, be careful and be SAFE", he wrote.

"As we have been predicting, this hurricane is unpredictable", McMaster said at a news briefing updating the state's response to Florence on Wednesday. "It's a big one", he said at the White House.

"We're sticking around", she said, adding that about three-fourths of her neighbors in Covington Lakes intend to stay in their homes as well.

He said electric power could be out for weeks.

A tropical storm warning, indicating the expectation of conditions below hurricane-strength winds, is in effect for coastal areas north of the Virginia border to Cape Charles Light, Va., and in Chesapeake Bay, south of New Point Comfort, Va.

McMaster had ordered evacuations for all coastal SC counties on Monday.

But that's still short of an estimated more than 750,000 people who were expected to leave when evacuations were ordered as of noon Tuesday.

"In fact, this entire area is under a mandatory evacuation order", he said.

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"One of our four pillars is warmth, and we feel this is an appropriate way to bring that to life", he continued.

STORM SURGE: The combination of a risky storm surge and the tide will cause normally dry areas near the coast to be flooded by rising waters moving inland from the shoreline.

Florence weakened slightly to a Category 3 hurricane on Wednesday.

Benson has lived in North Carolina for more than a decade and now is headed away from the hurricane's destructive path.

The commanding general says anyone remaining on base will have food, water and protection despite being in the projected path of the storm. "It's going to happen. We just need to figure out how to make it through". Shelters in the city were filling and some people were being bused inland to Raleigh, even though some residents there were told they might have to evacuate.

"I tried to stock up on water because I was going to stay initially, but then as the hurricane got closer and it was going to come close to where Lumberton was, I then made the decision to come home", Benson said.

North Carolina Governor Roy Cooper predicted tens of thousands of homes and businesses would be flooded in his state.

"A lot of our storefronts are boarded up", said Lynn Davis, town manager for Belhaven which sits at sea level in northeastern North Carolina.

On its current track, Florence is expected to hit the Carolinas and Virginia the hardest, the NHC said.