4 dead as Hurricane Florence drenches the Carolinas

Long listens as U.S. President Donald Trump holds an Oval Office meeting on preparations for hurricane Florence at the White House in Washington

4 dead as Hurricane Florence drenches the Carolinas

While Florence has been downgraded to a Category 2 storm, it remains unpredictable according to the National Hurricane Center (NHC).

Hurricane Florence, the powerful category 2 storm, continues to churn towards the North Carolina and SC border and a local woman is stuck in the storm's path. "Catastrophic effects will be felt".

An American Red Cross aid worker walks through the cafeteria at Conway High School which is being used as a Hurricane Florence evacuation shelter at Conway High School on September 13, 2018 in Conway, South Carolina.

The powerful storm already has inundated coastal streets with ocean water and left tens of thousands without power, and forecasters say that "catastrophic" freshwater flooding is expected over portions of the Carolinas as Hurricane Florence inches closer to the U.S. East Coast.

Friday looks hot and dry with only a slim chance of a few spotty showers as Hurricane Florence stalls near the North Carolina-South Carolina border.

The center said the threat of freshwater flooding will increase over the next several days.

North Carolina alone could see the equivalent of eight months of rain over two or three days, National Weather Service meteorologist Brandon Locklear said.

Officials pleaded with residents across the Carolinas to treat the storm as a deadly threat.

Florence's forward movement during the day slowed to a crawl - sometimes it was moving no faster than a human can walk - and that enabled it to pile on the rain.

With South Carolina's beach towns more in the bull's-eye because of the shifting forecast, OH vacationers Chris and Nicole Roland put off their departure from North Myrtle Beach to get the maximum amount of time on the sand.

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Subtropical Storm Joyce is located 945 miles west-southwest of the Azores and is moving to the southwest at 6 mph (9 km/h). The tropical storm is tracking to the west at 20 miles per hour with top winds of 60 miles per hour with higher gusts.

At least 150,000 people were without power in North Carolina early Friday with the brunt of the storm yet to come, according to utility companies. Millions of people were expected to lose power from the storm and restoration could take weeks.

The Charlotte campus serves many students, Richards said, including those who study on campus and take classes online.

The storm, which was downgraded to a Category Two on Thursday, is posing enormous threat to North Carolina's southern coast on Friday following flash flooding and potentially deadly storm surges. It has also moved most ships, submarines and planes out their base at Hampton Roads, Virginia, to safety far at sea or in distant airbases.

Not everybody was heeding orders to evacuate, however. Sixty-one shelters have opened in SC - 12 designated for evacuees with special medical needs - able to accommodate more than 31,000 additional people.

Wilmington is the state's fifth-largest city, with about 121,00 residents.

"We might leave", she said.

"We're recommending people to stay here".

President Donald Trump is expected to travel to areas hit by Florence next week, once it is determined his travel will not disrupt any rescue or recovery efforts, the White House said on Friday.

Gibson said Friday that while she and her family were safe, she and her husband had gotten around 75 calls and texts from others asking for help. "We're fully prepared. Food, medical, everything you can imagine, we are ready". South Carolina's state capital Columbia is at only 89m (292ft). But residents inland are warned to expect life-threatening floods and should plan to be without power for days. "Storms of this magnitude have struck the US coastline in the past, in some cases causing $10 billion or less in total damage".

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