And that's just the prelude to untold days of misery.
Power outages, flooding and storm surge were the main concerns for the state as the Cat.
At this height of the Atlantic hurricane season, Florence was being trailed on east-to-west paths by two other storms, Hurricane Helene and Tropical Storm Isaac, but neither packs the deadly punch of Florence. But one thing it might actually help is to reduce the overall wind speed, though we're still going to have gusty winds around here which combined with that wet soil could bring down some trees.
To the north, most of Maryland is in the 4-10-inch range. That's enough to fill more than 15 million Olympic-size swimming pools.
Hurricane force winds are extending outwards from the centre of the storm by 80 miles.
"It's cumulative damage", Myers said. You're going to be displaced from your home in the coastal areas.
Though Florence won't be making landfall until Friday, tropical-storm-force winds - 39 to 73 miles per hour (63 to 117 km/h) - will begin whipping through coastal regions as early as tomorrow, making it exceptionally risky to be outside, Graham said.More news: LeBron James congratulates Seattle Storm on WNBA title
"Little change in strength is expected before the center reaches the coast, with weakening expected after the center moves inland", the National Hurricane Center said.
Some forecasters have predicted it could be the most powerful storm ever to hit the region.
Close to 40,000 tons of toxic waste was dumped near the town of Eden, North Carolina.
FOX News Channel (FNC) is a 24-hour all-encompassing news service dedicated to delivering breaking news as well as political and business news. "Many that will accept them only allow one per room".
"They'll be looking very closely at major transmission lines that have tens of thousands of customers associated with them", Penn said.
"Since my husband retired and my health declined, we have his retirement as an income".More news: Lloris gets driving ban for drink-driving
'Florence, excuse me, ' he added later. "So since we can find anything within our means, ... we've opted to stay". "It can go back up", she said. It's a kind gesture but doesn't alleviate Browning's fear.
"We have two boats and all our worldly possessions", said Susan Patchkofsky, who refused her family's pleas to evacuate and stayed at Emerald Isle with her husband. "But I think it'll be OK".
Florence could bring wind-driven storm surges of seawater as high as four metres and NHC Director Ken Graham said on Facebook they could push in as far as three kilometres. Being able to analyze the weather and future climate of an area using the physically-based techniques proposed by Emanuel could enable better decision-making with respect to land development.
Some areas are expected to see between 20 and 30 inches of rain through early next week in the area shaded in purple in the second image above. That 1996 storm caused some of the worst damage in North Carolina history. "Life-threatening storm surge flooding, catastrophic flash flooding and prolonged significant river flooding are still expected".
If this scenario plays out, meteorologists say there would be monumental rainfall totals along the coast and just inland east of the eye's landfall location.
"Even the rescuers can not stay there", he said.More news: U.S. Identifies Bodies of Two Veterans Returned by North Korea