According to aircraft data, its maximum sustained winds have increased to near 90 miles per hour.
A mandatory evacuation was ordered for Hatteras Island and Dare County in North Carolina.
SC ordered an estimated one million people to evacuate its coast today as the state and neighbouring North Carolina brace for Hurricane Florence.
Cooper has requested President Donald Trump to issue a disaster declaration for the state to relief can be delivered to affected areas as soon as possible after the storm passes.
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He said around one million people would be fleeing the coast.
In coastal Charleston, South Carolina, city officials offered sandbags to residents. "Make your plans now", he said.
"So when this is all said and done this is probably going to be the costliest storm in the history of the Carolinas because not only are you dealing with a major hurricane hit, but you're dealing with flooding of biblical proportions", Bastardi explains.
All government services will remain in operation tomorrow as Hurricane Florence passes to the south of the island.
These swells, already affecting Bermuda, "are likely to cause life-threatening surf and rip current conditions", the NHC warned.
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In addition, more than 750 South Carolina Guard personnel were placed on state active duty orders for Florence response after 564 were added Monday.
In response to the upgrade, meteorologists and weather-trackers warned people to pay attention to future developments. "The majority of inland flood fatalities occur in vehicles". Currently, three hurricanes with divergent paths are churning through the Atlantic, and most urgently, forecasters are sounding the alarm about Florence. Further out in the Atlantic, two storms - Helene and Isaac - gained hurricane force on Sunday.
The storm won't be a threat to oil production but it could damage the east coast.
The forecast track for Hurricane Olivia as of 5 a.m. today.
For many, the challenge could be finding a safe refuge: If Florence slows to a crawl just off the coast, it could carry torrential rains up into the Appalachian mountains, causing flash floods, mudslides and other unsafe weather across a wide area.
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A very risky situation ahead this week for parts of the East Coast. "The "p" storm has already formed in the eastern Pacific, and we have a couple months left in the season".