Tropical Storm Florence Expected To Turn Into Hurricane

Minnie NorrisSep 10, 2018

The National Hurricane Center classified tropical storm Florence as a Category 1 hurricane, Sunday, warning that it would rapidly intensify into a major hurricane by Monday and could make the Thursday landfall as a Category 4 "extremely risky major hurricane".

The National Hurricane Center said Florence's maximum sustained winds early Saturday morning were estimated to be 60 miles per hour (95 kph).

The storm is heading west at 7 miles per hour and packing maximum-sustained winds of 40 miles per hour.

The Miami-based hurricane center said that it is too early to know what path the storm will take, but that it could roll ashore in the Carolinas by Friday.

Florence is forecast to rapidly strengthen to a major hurricane by Monday, and is expected to remain an extremely risky major hurricane through Thursday.

The governors of North and SC and Virginia declared states of emergency far ahead of the storm to get ready.

And a third tropical storm has formed in the eastern Atlantic Ocean.

Risky swells generated by Florence were expected to batter Bermuda early in the week, as well as parts of the U.S. Eastern Seaboard.

McMaster said he had asked President Donald Trump to declare a federal emergency in SC in anticipation of the storm's arrival. South Carolina Gov. Henry McMaster emphasized that there's no way to know yet when and where the storm will hit land, or when evacuations might be called.

It is forecast to approach the southeastern US coast on Thursday.

Elsewhere in the tropics, officials say Tropical Storm Helene is approaching islands off the western coast of Africa.

North Carolina Governor Roy Cooper also urged his state's residents to get ready, noting the storm already was generating swelling waves and unsafe currents along the coast.

"Strengthening is forecast during the next few days, and Isaac is expected to become a hurricane by Monday, (September 10)", the DDM said.

Regardless of the eventual path of Florence, large swells will affect beaches this upcoming week, creating "rough surf, life-threatening rip currents and steep waves at inlet entrances", the NWS reports.

- The Atlantic hurricane season hits its peak on Monday and we now have three named storms to watch - Florence, Helene, and Isaac.

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