If you live along the USA coast from the Southeast to the Mid-Atlantic, you need to prepare for what increasingly looks like a worst case scenario: landfall of a Category 3 or even 4 hurricane.
As of noon ET Monday, Florence was moving at 13 mph, some 575 miles south-southeast of Bermuda the hurricane center said. It appears the storm is mostly likely to make landfall in North or SC by the end of the week, but it could still shift, and states in the Mid-Atlantic and Southeast are being warned to brace for potentially historic storm effects. In fact, there have only been four other hurricanes in our recorded history (since 1851) that have made landfall along the east coast north of Florida. Even before the evacuation order, Dare County emergency officials warned that rough seas and strong rip currents are already creating unsafe conditions.
"The bottom line is that there is increasing confidence that Florence will be a large and extremely risky hurricane, regardless of its exact intensity", the NHC forecast warned.
The governors of North and SC, as well as Virginia, have declared states of emergency ahead of landfall.
The storm "is too powerful and its path is too uncertain to take any chances", South Carolina Governor Henry McMaster said, issuing his state's emergency declaration.
The Miami-based National Hurricane Centre (NHC) said that Isaac, packing winds of 75 miles per hour (mph) located near latitude 14.7 north, longitude 43.9 West and moving towards the west near 14 mph.
Isaac is expected to approach the Lesser Antilles on Thursday as a strong tropical storm or a Category 1 hurricane.
Oliva said various models have the storm's eye making landfall anywhere between Myrtle Beach, South Carolina, and Cape Hatteras in the Outer Banks. Further, residents and tourists should expect heavy prolonged rain upon the storm's arrival.
Universities closer to the North Carolina coast had already announced cancellations.
The 2018 hurricane season lasts until November 30.
Hurricane Florence is now at a Category 4.
"We here in North Carolina are bracing for a hard hit", Cooper said Monday.
Hurricane Helene is a Category 2 hurricane and is in the far eastern Atlantic and is not forecast to affect land.
Over the next 36 hours, Florence's winds could reach 150 mph, the hurricane center says.
Florence's predicted path, as of early Monday morning.
"The Storms in the Atlantic are very risky", President Donald Trump tweeted.