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Hurricane Florence threatens to unleash catastrophic inland flooding in Carolinas, Virginias

September 14, 2018 Destination North America No Comments Email Email

With the potential for Florence’s forward speed to slow and possibly stall, a current forecast of feet of rain would lead to catastrophic flash flooding and major river flooding in parts of the Carolinas, southern Virginia and possibly other neighboring states.

In general, most of hurricane damage and loss of life occurs not on the coast, but from flooding as the result of heavy rain. In all likelihood, this will be the case with Hurricane Florence as well, according to AccuWeather President and Founder Dr. Joel N. Myers.

“There could be devastating floods well in from the coast back in the hills and mountains of North Carolina, Virginia and West Virginia,” Myers said.

Which areas are likely to be hit the hardest by inland flooding? AccuWeather Local StormMax™ forecast predicts up to 40 inches for portions of the Carolinas

As AccuWeather meteorologists have warned about since the middle of the soggy and in some cases record wet summer, any tropical storm or hurricane that moves over saturated ground in the eastern United States during the height of the hurricane season may lead to disastrous flooding.

On Thursday, the first bands of rain directly associated with Florence will arrive on the Carolina and Virginia coasts. Rainfall will then spread inland and intensify on Friday and during the weekend.

Florence has the potential to cause a storm record rainfall in North Carolina and South Carolina.

“At this time, the most likely scenario is for 1-2 feet of rain with a AccuWeather Local StormMax™ of 40 inches centered on portions of the Carolinas from Florence,” Kottlowski said.

AccuWeather Local StormMax™ is more hyper local than other sources, and AccuWeather is predicting higher rainfall amounts than other sources. If 40 inches of rain fall, it will be the heaviest amount of rain from a single storm in the lower 48 states since Hurricane Harvey last year.

Download the free AccuWeather app to stay up-to-date with Florence’s expected track and impacts to the U.S.

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