Hurricane Florence, 8 pm Monday: Torrential flooding expected statewide

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Hurricane Florence has grown to a potentially catastrophic Category 4 storm Monday as it closed in on North and SC, carrying winds and water that could wreak havoc over a wide stretch of the eastern United States later this week.

"This latest briefing is part of the president's monitoring of multiple storms that are predicted to affect the the coming days", Sanders said in the statement, adding that the White House is in contact with governor's offices in all the areas affected, including the Carolinas.

USC Athletics sends its thoughts and prayers to those preparing for the storm and hope that you will be safe and careful during this time.

North Carolina governor Roy Cooper said his state was "in the bullseye" of the storm and urged people to "get ready now". So far, mandatory evacuation orders have been issued for residents and visitors in some coastal areas of the state, while other counties only issued them for those in low lying and "flood prone" areas.

Coastal North Carolina may receive up to 40 inches (100 centimeters) of rain, the National Hurricane Center said.

He said: "We here in North Carolina are bracing for a hard hit".

AccuWeather meteorologists believe that Florence will reach the Carolina or Virginia coasts and pose a serious threat to lives and property late this week.

South Carolina Gov. Henry McMaster ordered a mandatory evacuation of most of the state's coast beginning at noon on Tuesday.

At this height of the Atlantic hurricane season, Florence is being trailed on east-to-west paths by two other hurricanes, Helene and Isaac.

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The National Weather Service is forecasting "significant" river flooding, especially in the northeastern portion of the state. Weather forecasters also warn that the threat of tornadoes is increasing as the system draws closer to land.

However, the National Hurricane Center predicts it could rise to 150 miles per hour winds just before landfall sometime Thursday night.

"We do not want to risk one SC life in this hurricane", the governor told reporters. "Everyone in Virginia need to be prepared", said Northam. On Monday, the storm strengthened to a Category 4 with 130 miles per hour winds.

"This is a huge storm", said Robert Woodward, chairman of the Dare County Board of Commissioners, predicting 15 to 20 inches (38 to 50 centimetres) of rain.

"As of right now, as of the 11 o'clock advisory, we don't anticipate any significant issues from Hurricane Florence, " said Chatham Emergency Management Agency Director Dennis Jones at a press conference Monday afternoon.

Helene was weakening, however, and posed no danger to land, the NHC said, while Isaac could bring heavy rain to Martinique, Dominica and Guadeloupe.

Evacuations were happening along the coast of North and South Carolina, and the projected landfall was expected between Charleston, South Carolina, and Norfolk, Virginia.

The video, taken with a high-definition camera outside the International Space Station, shows a "stark and sobering view" of the Category 4 storm as it moves in a west-northwesterly direction across the Atlantic. Its center will move between Bermuda and the Bahamas on Tuesday and Wednesday and approach the coast of SC or North Carolina on Thursday, the National Hurricane Center said. It was centred east-south-east of Cape Fear, North Carolina, and moving west. NASA cameras also captured the storm earlier in September as it churned across the North Atlantic. One out of every five South Carolinians, about 1 million in all, are in the evacuation zones covering eight counties. "We've never seen anything quite like this, on the East Coast at least", he said, according to Reuters.

"I don't think many of us have ever been through a Category 4".