MYRTLE BEACH, S.C. (AP) — The outer bands of wind and rain from Hurricane Florence are moving onshore along North Carolina’s barrier islands as the massive storm bears down on the Southeastern coastline.
As of 8 a.m., the Category 2 storm was centered about 170 miles (275 kilometers) east-southeast of Wilmington, North Carolina, and about 220 miles (355 kilometers) east-southeast of Myrtle Beach, South Carolina. Its forward movement slowed to 12 mph (19 kph) and top sustained winds stayed at 110 mph (175 kph).
Forecasters at the National Hurricane Center in Miami don’t expect it to strengthen from a Category 2 hurricane before it moves ashore, but they say the real problem will be water as Florence lingers along the coast through Saturday.
Florence’s hurricane-force winds were blowing 80 miles (130 kilometers) from its center, and tropical-storm-force winds reached up to 195 miles (315 kilometers) from the eye.