NASA Releases Footage Of Hurricane Florence And Her 'Mike Tyson Punch'

Cristina Cross
September 13, 2018

Florence's weakening as it neared the coast created tension between some who left home and authorities who anxious that the storm could still be deadly.

"This is a horrific nightmare storm from a meteorological perspective", University of Georgia meteorology professor Marshall Shepherd said. Meanwhile, evacuations are underway in the Philippines where Super Typhoon Mangkhut has reached the strength of a Category 5 hurricane.

In recent years, predictions about a storm's trajectory, which arises from the weather's natural variability, have improved due to better understanding of the atmosphere and its rivers of air. At least nine nuclear facilities also lie in the storm's path, including Duke Energy's Brunswick nuclear plant in North Carolina.

It has become likely that the storm will reverse course early next week and turn back north toward West Virginia, Virginia, Maryland and Pennsylvania, albeit significantly weakened.

Tim Terman's house in Southport, North Carolina, is about 20 feet above sea level.

Anxious about how the government will respond to Hurricane Florence's devastation?

It is still unclear how the wind tug of war will play out, making it hard to predict how the storm will move. "This rainfall would produce catastrophic flash flooding and significant river flooding", the National Hurricane Center said.

Mountains inland could also exacerbate the storm's impact. "When I left the Island, AFTER the storm had hit, they had anywhere from 6 to 18 deaths". The more it hovers just off shore, the more potentially deadly storm surge it could push on-shore.

Florence is now heading for ocean water that has surface temperatures of about 85 degrees, meaning it will most likely strengthen on its way to the East Coast. Last year, some airlines caught flack because of high fares in advance of Hurricane Irma. The winds may be down a bit, but the one-two intense punches that we are expecting are still there.

Sea level along the coast of North Carolina and SC has risen more than a foot since 1950, as the warming ocean waters have expanded like a hot-air balloon, says climate scientist Jonathan Overpeck at the University of Michigan's School for Environment and Sustainability.

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About 10 million people are in the sights of the storm as it zeroes in on the Southeastern coast.

"We're going to stay tight and check on everybody", he said. In North Carolina, Cooper says, "2,800 soldiers will be on active duty, joined by even more on standby".

"You have a double whammy in the flooding", he said. "You just have a wetter atmosphere and that means more rain".

Hurricane Florence has decreased in speed and is now a Category 2 hurricane, the National Hurricane Center announced shortly before midnight Wednesday.

In 2017, the world's oceans were warmer than ever and the most recent seasonal ocean temperature survey, which covered April-June, was the warmest period on record.

As of Wednesday night, Florence's tropical storm force winds were almost 400 miles wide - or the roughly the equivalent of driving from Washington, D.C, to Charlotte, North Carolina; or from Milwaukee, Wisconsin to St. Louis; or from Los Angeles to San Francisco.

A crawling pace can be even more punishing than a fast one, because it lets the storm stall in one area as it dumps more and more heavy rain.

Climate change fuels hurricanes by increasing the amount of moisture in the atmosphere and heightening the warmth of the oceans.

And if Florence weren't enough, other storms out there are threatening people. That is entirely dominated by the weather system.

This week, however, one of the strongest indications yet that Trump may in fact finally decide to try and remove Mueller and shut down the Special Counsel has surfaced, and it's from one of the President's biggest allies, Sean Hannity.

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