NOAA director warns of 'serious situation' ahead of Hurricane Florence

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Even scarier: It could get more intense as it gets closer to the Carolinas.

In the Pacific, Hurricane Olivia triggered warnings for multiple Hawaiian islands. Hurricane force winds start at 74 miles per hour.

Hurricane Florence has now intensified to category 4, with 130 miles per hour winds.

Astonishing winds aren't the biggest danger.

"We will experience power outages, we will have infrastructure damage, there will be homes damaged, there will be debris on the roads - this will be a storm that creates and causes massive damage to our country", announced Jeffrey Byard, Response and Recovery administrator for FEMA. A fast-moving storm would dump a lot of rain, but not to the extent that a slow-moving stprm will. "It also has the highest potential to cause the most destruction". "The storm's intensity can fluctuate over this period, initially weakening as the inner eye wall dies before again strengthening as the outer eye wall contracts", says NASA.

Forecasters said Isaac should regain hurricane strength as it reaches the Lesser Antilles. Meanwhile, the coastal locations are expected to receive 10-30 inches of rain. So the land can't absorb much more water.

TODAY show host Al Roker said the hurricane is now staying on track with computer models indicating Florence remains to be moving west north west at 17 miles per hour.

While Orsi warned "never to say never", she said "it seems unlikely" that Florence's effect on flights "will be on the same level as Harvey, Irma or Sandy".

A state of emergency has been declared in three U.S. states, as the east coast braces for the arrival of category five storm Florence.

And in the 29 years since Hurricane Hugo struck, the population of the coastal Carolinas has skyrocketed.

The 11 a.m. Sunday projected path forecast for Hurricane Florence. By sunset Thursday and through most of Friday, our area will see the worst of the conditions, he said. That's one of those things where, unless you fancy riding out the night on your roof, this is why you need to evacuate.

A steady stream of vehicles full of people and belongings flowed inland on Tuesday, and North Carolina Governor Roy Cooper tried to convince everyone to flee.

"We're a resilient bunch down here".

"Any amount of money, whatever it takes, we're going to do it", Trump said Tuesday as he talked about relief efforts with federal disaster officials. "But this is pretty serious".

Correction: A previous version of this story misidentified a photo of hurricane Florence as one of hurricane Helene; astronaut Ricky Arnold did not share a photo of the latter storm on Twitter.