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Hurricane Florence downgraded to Category 2, still considered unsafe

Hurricane Florence downgraded to Category 2, still considered unsafe

Hurricane Florence, heading for the Carolinas, "will likely be the storm of a lifetime" for areas of the coast, according to the National Weather Service early Wednesday.

Hurricane Florence is continuing to move west-northwest and is still forecast to hit North Carolina and SC, bringing destructive storm surges, rain, and wind.

Jeff Byard, an administrator at the Federal Emergency Management Agency, said: "Do you want to get hit with a train or do you want to get hit with a cement truck?"

The National Hurricane Center's best guess was that Florence would blow ashore as early as Friday afternoon around the North Carolina-South Carolina line, then push its rainy way westward with a potential for catastrophic inland flooding.

Governor Nathan Deal declared a state of emergency for the state of Georgia: "in light of the storm's forecasted southward track after making landfall".

"The state is mobilising all available resources to ensure public safety", Deal said.

Virginia Governor Ralph Northam joined the chorus of warnings, and issued an evacuation order for about a quarter million residents in flood-prone coastal areas, beginning Tuesday morning.

The News & Observer reports that the storm's path shifted early Wednesday and it is now bearing down on southern North Carolina and northern SC, where it could dump up to 40 inches of rain in places.

Seven-day rainfall totals are forecast to reach 10 to 20 inches over much of North Carolina and Virginia, and even 30 inches in some places.

As of Tuesday, about 1.7 million people in North and SC and Virginia were under warnings to evacuate the coast, and hurricane watches and warnings extended across an area with about 5.4 million residents.

The storms path is promising to bring even more devastation than first predicted to the Carolinas and parts of Georgia.

Trump tweeted about the danger to Georgia Wednesday, saying, "Hurricane Florence may now be dipping a bit south and hitting a portion of the Great State of Georgia".

Hurricane Florence is now expected to head more directly west after making landfall, crossing through SC.

Many North Carolina residents say, they don't want to leave. Most other beachgoers were long done. Forecasters also were tracking two other disturbances. But despite that, bad things can happen when you're talking about a storm this size.

"Marshall Athletics Director Mike Hamrick and I have been in constant contact throughout the week about the game", Tanner said. "You feel like you should have already left".

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