Governor declares state of emergency in NC as Tropical Storm Florence strengthens

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At one time a powerful Category 3 hurricane, Florence has weakened over the last day or two.

There is more tropical activity beyond Florence, so it's not a bad idea to think about this anyway.

Closer to the USA, there's a large area of disorganized showers and thunderstorms in the western Atlantic that has a low chance of forming into a tropical storm. Hawkins said the office will begin sending out regular PowerPoints on the storm's movement to local emergency officials and media, and additional National Weather Service staff will be brought in early next week.

"While it is too early to change plans, all interests in Bermuda and along the East Coast of the US should closely monitor the movement of Florence over this weekend and next week", AccuWeather hurricane expert Dan Kottlowski said. Life-threatening surf and rip tides are possible.

Florence became the first Category 4 hurricane of the 2018 Atlantic season before slowing down a bit - with its maximum sustained winds decreasing to near 65 miles per hour, the NOAA reported.

Some hurricane models indicate Hurricane Florence, the first major hurricane of the 2018 season, could pose a threat to the eastern United States coastline, including SC.

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"We are expecting it to intensify later this weekend, to return to hurricane status", he told NEWS 95.7's The Rick Howe Show.

"That means an increased risk for rip currents, risky surf, and potentially coastal wave run-up and beach erosion".

The storm is forecast to get uncomfortably close to parts of the USA east coast, including the Carolinas.

A low-pressure system west of the Cabo Verde Islands was expected to develop into a tropical system in coming days.

There is still much uncertainty surrounding Florence and its strength and path.

As of Thursday, the storm was moving northwest through the central Atlantic Ocean at a speed near 10 miles per hour with maximum sustained winds of 105 miles per hour.