Governor declares State of Emergency ahead of Florence

Storm season peaks: Hurricane Florence still far from landfall, uncertainty remains for East Coast

Florence's maximum sustained winds Friday evening were estimated to be 105 km/h, with the storm centred about 1457km east-southeast of Bermuda and moving west at 13km/h.

Florence's first impact to Bermuda and the US East Coast could start this weekend with large swells, potentially causing risky surf conditions and rip currents. At this point, its exact landfall location is very hard to determine as Florence will eventually make a NW and then north turn.

The NHC encouraged residents along the east coast to review their hurricane plans. Florence is forecast to intensify further as it moves over the warm waters of the Gulf Stream through Wednesday.

"This is a classic recipe for a quick intensification trend, and Florence is expected to become a major hurricane by days 4 and 5", wrote Robbie Berg, a specialist with the hurricane center in a Friday afternoon forecast discussion. The WFMY News 2 Weather team predicts it may get uncomfortably close to the East Coast by the middle of next week.

With Tropical Storm Florence forecast to strengthen as it heads toward the east coast, Gov. Roy Cooper declared a State of Emergency and waived transportation rules to help farmers harvest and transport their crops more quickly.

China raises fears of 'new colonialism' with $60 billion investment across Africa
China also pledged it would train 200,000 technical personnel and provide 40,000 training opportunities for Africans in China. His new offer to Africa included an exemption on debt owed to the country by African states that was due to expire this year.

Forecasters at the National Hurricane Center are now juggling predictions for two tropical storms, Helene and Florence, a tropical depression and another low-pressure area that popped up Friday between the USA mainland and Florence. If it does brush up against the coast, Cumberland County could see winds and rain, Morrow said. The storm is moving west at 13 miles per hour.

Both are expected to become tropical storms in the next 24 hours and will be named Helene and Isaac. Helene has winds of 45 mph, and is 330 miles from the Cabo Verde Islands.

Forecasters expect Helene to bring tropical storm conditions to parts of the Cabo Verde Islands on Saturday night and officials warn heavy rainfall on the islands could produce life-threatening flash floods. The system is moving west-northwest at 5 miles per hour.

There is also Tropical Depression Nine in the Central Atlantic. After passing the Cabo Verde Islands the system was not expected to pose a direct threat to land for at least several days.

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