Flights cancelled in the US Southeast as Hurricane Florence approaches

Flights cancelled in the US Southeast as Hurricane Florence approaches

Despite the downgrade, Florence is expected to produce catastrophic flooding throughout the Carolinas.

SC authorities reported one death.

Businesses and homes in the storm's path were boarded up and thousands of people had moved to emergency shelters, officials said, urging anyone who remained near the coast to flee.

The "threat of freshwater flooding will increase over the next several days" in the impacted areas. By the time the storm reaches Charlotte on Saturday, the winds will have slowed down significantly, with gusts expected around 40 miles per hour. The storm was moving northwest at 12 miles per hour.

According to CNN, North Carolina Governor Roy Cooper told reporters that emergency personnel will not be able to intervene during the storm due to the high risk it poses.

The National Weather Service has issued a coastal flood warning for the Peninsula, including Williamsburg, James City County and York County, as Hurricane Florence nears landfall in the Carolinas. "Florence will then recurve across the western Carolinas and the central Appalachian Mountains early next week".

Row upon row of empty shelves are visible in CNN news footage, as residents threatened by mega-storm Hurricane Florence stockpile essentials including food, water and batteries. Tropical-Storm-force winds extend outward up to 195 miles from the center.

Roads and intersections on North Carolina's Outer Banks barrier islands were already inundated with water. That's down from a high of 140mph, but still expected to cause "life-threatening storm surge and rainfall". Noting the heavy bands on the hurricane's northeast quadrant, he added, "We are on the bad side of this storm". The Outer Banks are experiencing wind gusts over 30 miles per hour and rain from the outermost bands has begun to fall in coastal areas of both North and SC.

The storm's forward motion has slowed 11km/h since Wednesday (local time), which was predicted as the storm nears the coast.

More than 10 million people are under watches and warnings, the Associated Press reported.

North Carolina, South Carolina, Virginia, Maryland, and Georgia have declared states of emergency over the storm.

President Trump spoke with the senators of North Carolina and SC, telling them they have the full support of the federal government and the feds will be there to help with anything their states may need.

A hurricane warning is in effect for South Santee River, SC, north to Duck, NC, and the Albemarle and Pamlico Sounds. This includes Wilmington. A hurricane watch extends into the Charleston area.

With the storm already making an impact on the coastline, these are the most commonly asked questions, answered by the NBC Charlotte First Warn Storm Team. "I encourage Georgians to be prepared for the inland effects of the storm as well as the ensuing storm surge in coastal areas".

In the North Carolina town of Wilmington, which could take a direct hit from Florence, wind gusts were stirring up frothy white caps into the Cape Fear River.

The full force of Hurricane Florence is expected to hit on Friday. Slower storms mean more rainfall over a smaller area.