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Hurricane Florence map uses an unfortunate graphic to display devastation

Hurricane Florence map uses an unfortunate graphic to display devastation

Hurricane Florence seen from the International Space Station. "T$3 his is a no-kidding nightmare coming for you".

Fierce winds and massive waves are expected to lash the coasts of North and SC and Virginia even before Florence makes landfall by early Friday, bringing a storm surge as much as 13 feet (4 meters).

Nighttime winds have gone from 140mph (225kph) to 115mph (185kph), and further weakening is expected as Florence approaches the coast.

President Trump on Wednesday said that as Hurricane Florence makes its way toward the US, "protection of life is the absolute highest priority".

Florence is forecast to dump up to 40 inches (one meter) of rain in some areas after it makes landfall in North and SC.

Trump told residents: 'Don't play games with it.

Georgia Governor Nathan Deal, concerned the storm would bring its devastation south, issued an emergency declaration for all 159 counties in the state. "Even though it's down in South and North Carolina, it is a big storm and the track is ever-changing". The storm could knock out electricity to several million customers in the Carolinas.

The National Hurricane Center's projected track had Florence hovering off the southern North Carolina coast from Thursday night until landfall Saturday morning or so, about a day later than previously expected.

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"Do you want to get hit with a train or do you want to get hit with a cement truck?" said Jeff Byard, an administrator with the country's Federal Emergency Management Agency.

As of 11 a.m., the potentially catastrophic Category 4 storm was centered 485 miles (785 kilometers) southeast of Wilmington, moving at 15 mph (24 kph) with winds of 130 mph (215 kph) and enough moisture to dump feet of rain on the region.

Duke Energy, a power company in the Carolinas, estimated that one million to three million customers could lose electricity because of the storm and that it could take weeks to restore.

Based on the latest information from the National Weather Service, CoreLogic uses past hurricanes, elevations above sea level and population density, among other factors, to advise emergency responders and insurers where they should focus their resources.

In a trailer park outside Wilmington, Alondra Espinoza was preparing to leave with her two young children.

Shepard Smith and Flaherty said reports showed storm surge from the system is likely to be felt dozens of miles inland, including along the Neuse River Basin - which stretches inward from New Bern toward Rocky Mount and Nashville, N.C.

Though sheltering in place with vulnerable patients is necessary for many facilities, more lean toward evacuation ― in part because of lessons learned in previous disasters.