Tropics erupt as Florence, Helene and Isaac all churn in the Atlantic

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But forecasters said that the risk of "direct impacts continues to increase" and that a huge coastal area from northern Florida to North Carolina should prepare for a major hit by Thursday.

Florence is still sitting more than 1000 miles off the east coast of the United States, but it's still our main focus in the tropics.

Florence is moving toward the west near 6 miles per hour, and this general motion is expected to continue today. Tropical storm force winds could be felt in Charlotte from this system. It is not yet known if Florence will make landfall. Landfall along the east coast is possible late Thursday or early Friday.

None of the storms now presents an immediate threat to South Florida, according to the 5 p.m. Sunday advisory from the National Hurricane Center.

Hurricane Gordon was the latest storm to hit the country, with strong winds and floods in Alabama.

Henry McMaster, governor of SC, warned the USA should be braced for the hurricane to hit.

Improving atmospheric conditions are expected to allow Florence to regain its former strength - the storm reached major hurricane status Wednesday, believed to be a Category Four hurricane, peaking with maximum sustained winds of 210km/h.

This weekend's weather made it clear that we've reached peaked hurricane season - two are churning in the Atlantic while a third is expected by Monday.

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While Florence is forecast to stay north of Florida, large swells will impact the east coast of our state resulting in life-threatening surf and rip currents.

At 5p.m. the center of Tropical Storm Isaac was located near latitude 14.5 north, longitude 36.6 west, moving towards the west near 7 miles per hour (11 kilometres per hour).

"There is an increasing risk of coastal storm surge flooding and freshwater flooding from heavy prolonged rain when the hurricane approaches the US", said a NOAA tweet.

Forecasters said it was too soon to determine the exact timing, location and magnitude of storm surges and flooding Florence will cause.

Graphic illustration and forecast of Tropical Storm Isaac as at September 9 2018. The storm is expected to undergo rapid intensification beginning on Sunday night, and will likely become a major hurricane by Monday.

Governors in Virginia, North Carolina and SC have all declared states of emergency over the past two days in anticipation of the storm. Florence could bring significant flooding along the coast all the way to rivers and streams in the western part of the state, he said.

Tropical storm force winds extend 80 miles from the center.