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Three storms churned in the Atlantic Ocean on Sept. 8 2018.               National Hurricane Center

Three storms churned in the Atlantic Ocean on Sept. 8 2018. National Hurricane Center

Currently, three hurricanes with divergent paths are churning through the Atlantic, and most urgently, forecasters are sounding the alarm about Florence.

Sustained winds at 130 miles per hour, moving west at 13 miles per hour.

Helene - now just southeast of the Cabo Verde islands off the African coast - had winds of 136km/h, and was expected to turn northwest and then north into the open Atlantic by midweek, the NHC said. Florence was a Category 4 storm late afternoon Monday.

The storm may stall and "make some kind of loop," the National Weather Service told The Island Packet and The Beaufort Gazette previously.

Up to nine hurricanes and four "major" depressions with sustained winds of at least 100mph have been predicted by U.S. government, The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA). It is expected to become a major hurricane by Monday night. During a press conference Monday morning, N.C. Gov. Roy Cooper said his state is "in the bull's eye" of the storm.

Hurricane Florence is expected to hit the southeastern U.S.as "a large and extremely unsafe hurricane", the National Hurricane Center says, after the storm quickly strengthened on Monday.

At present, the National Hurricane Center still has not issued any coastal watches or warnings (those could come as early as Tuesday morning), but North Carolina, South Carolina, and Virginia have all already declared states of emergency, letting state agencies coordinate resources to prepare for a possible impact.

And with little wind shear to pull the storm apart, Florence's hurricane wind field was expected to expand over the coming days, increasing its storm surge and inland wind threats. As of the 5:00am advisory, Hurricane Florence has maximum sustained winds of 105 miles per hour, making it a Category 2 hurricane.

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Florence could bring a deadly coastal storm surge, and inland flooding as far north as Virginia, the NHC said.

And Hurricane Florence will take aim at the Southeast coast of the United States late this week, likely as a major hurricane.

Ahead of Florence's arrival, barrier islands were already seeing unsafe rip currents and seawater flowed over a state highway - the harbinger of a storm surge that could wipe out dunes and submerge entire communities.

Florence was producing large swells expected to reach from the northern Caribbean to the southern coasts of Canada's Maritime provinces.

Feltgen said it's important that people don't get "hung up on the cone", and prepare for the possibility of impacts in areas outside of it.

The storm is expected to head toward the U.S. East Coast, although its exact path is still unclear.

South Carolina's governor ordered the state's entire coastline evacuated starting at noon Tuesday and predicted that 1 million people would flee as highways reverse directions.

"The chances of it going out to sea are extremely slim at this point", she said.

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