"Tens of thousands of structures are expected to be flooded, and many more by rising rivers and creeks".
Florence's top winds were clocked on Thursday at 100mph as it churned in the Atlantic Ocean, down from a peak of 140mph earlier this week when it was classified as a Category 4.
As of 4 a.m., maximum sustained winds were at 90 miles per hour.
"I don't care if this goes down to a Category 1", CNN meteorologist Chad Myers said.
Residents wade through deep floodwater to retrieve belongings from the Trent Court public housing apartments after the Neuse River went over its banks during Hurricane Florence September 13, 2018 in New Bern, US.
Even if you know nothing about hurricanes, an unavoidable sense of doom and destruction overtakes you when you look at this image of Hurricane Florence as it moves inexorably toward North and SC.
"It's cumulative damage", Myers said. When fierce winds keep up for a long time, homes are "going to start to deteriorate. So will the power lines, as the trees fall down".
"Growing confidence that Southeast SC will experience a [prolonged] period of tropical storm winds and heavy rain Friday - Saturday from #Florence".
Manure lagoons are about as pleasant as they sound-vast open-air ponds of manure located next to the many hog farms near the North Carolina coast. As of 8 a.m., the hurricane is predicted to make landfall along the coast of the Carolinas tomorrow (Sept. 14), according to the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration's National Hurricane Center.
"It truly is really about the whole size of the storm", said National Hurricane Center head Ken Graham.
About 10 million people live in the path of the slow-moving storm and more than 1 million had been ordered to evacuate the coasts of the Carolinas and Virginia, jamming westbound roads and highways for miles.
"You put your life at risk by staying", Cooper said.
Although it's been downgraded to a category two storm with 105mph winds, officials say there could be feet - rather than inches - of rain.
Georgia joined North and South Carolina, Virginia and Maryland in issuing an emergency declaration as forecasts showed Florence dumping historic amounts of rain - potentially 37 trillion litres - on the southern states. "It's chilling, even from space", said Gerst. Sand dunes gone storm surge 4' into house knocking down walls first floor. "Flooding is nearly guaranteed".
"The worst of the storm is not yet here but these are early warnings of the days to come", he said. She packed up what she could and took a ferry.
But, knowing the intensity of Florence's impact on Myrtle Beach, "My friends are worrying me right now", Combs said.
At least 88,000 people were without power in North Carolina with the brunt of the storm yet to come, according to the state's emergency management agency. The prospect of even more rain across Pennsylvania anxious Port Deposit Mayor Wayne Tome Sr. on Thursday. "Get prepared on the East Coast, this is a no-kidding nightmare coming for you". "I've never been one to leave for a storm but this one kind of had me spooked".
It is the storm's movement and not its strength that has forecasters and officials anxious. Hurricane Helene is veering toward Europe. Those four storms are brewing at the same time Hurricane Olivia is pounding Hawaii.