Hurricane Florence causing 85-mph winds, will become major hurricane Monday

Florence expected to become hurricane, heading to southeast US

Hurricane Florence causing 85-mph winds, will become major hurricane Monday

- Hurricane Florence has continued to grow stronger, now reaching Category 3 storm strength as it closes in on the Carolinas.

In its 11 p.m. Sunday advisory, the National Hurricane Center upgraded Tropical Storm Isaac to a Category 1 hurricane, with winds of almost 75 miles per hour.

There's still a large cone of uncertainty about the storm's exact path, but the latest models show Florence tracking a little further south and west than previously thought, Wimberley said.

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A forecast from the hurricane center projected that Florence will pick up speed in the coming days. It is packing maximum sustained winds of 105 miles per hour and is moving to the west-northwest at 9 miles per hour.

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"Folks, if you are in the Carolinas or Virginia - this is a historic storm", declared Eric Holthaus, meteorologist and journalist who writes about extreme weather and climate change for Grist.

The University of North Carolina Wilmington announced it has canceled classes and issued a voluntary evacuation for students starting at noon today.

Florence is being followed across the Atlantic by two other Hurricanes, Isaac and Helene, which are yet to reach the same size or intensity as Florence.

Hurricane Helene is expected to turn north into the middle of the Atlantic Ocean, according to the National Hurricane Center.

The National Hurricane Center (NHC) says Florence has the makings of an "extremely dangerous" meteorological event, the BBC reports.

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Florence is expected to become a major hurricane Monday morning and "remain an extremely risky major hurricane through Thursday, " the hurricane center said in its 5 a.m. advisory. It is expected to approach the southeastern USA coast on Thursday. It was not immediately clear how many people were being evacuated.

A surge in the waters off the New England coast is expected to begin as soon as tomorrow, and could lead to some especially high tides and unsafe rip currents, Simpson says, but that's about it.

There no coastal warnings or watches yet.

At 0500 GMT Isaac, which the NHC called a small hurricane, was about 1,200 miles east of the Windward Islands - a region still recovering from last year's powerful Hurricane Maria - with maximum sustained winds near 75 miles per hour.

Mr Cooper said he had asked Mr Trump to declare a federal state of emergency for North Carolina. "Some gradual weakening is possible on Tuesday", the advisory says, "but Olivia will likely remain a threat to the Hawaiian Islands next week".

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