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Tropical Storm Florence turns into a hurricane

10 September 2018

But the gravest threat to the USA remains Hurricane Florence, which is expected to strengthen to a major hurricane by Monday night and remain "an extremely unsafe major hurricane" through Thursday, according to the Hurricane Center.

The storm's sustained winds reached 121 km/h, just over the threshold for a hurricane, as it made its way across the Atlantic, about 1210 kilometre southeast of Bermuda, the National Hurricane Centre said.

The Miami-based center says Florence is gaining strength and is expected to become a major hurricane Monday and keep that status as a powerful and extremely unsafe storm until Thursday. The storm is moving west at 7 miles per hour.

The NHC said the vast storm had maximum sustained winds of almost 75 miles per hour (120 kph), reaching up to 125 miles from its center, as it tracked west-northwestward across the western Atlantic.

Powerful hurricane could be headed to southeast US

The Ministry said the Emergency Broadcast station on 100.1fm is in operation, and official information will continue to be released by the Bermuda Weather Service, the Emergency Measures Organisation, the Ministry of National Security and the Department of Communications.

In the next two to three days, global models are showing northwesterly shear steadily increasing and potentially reaching a maximum of around 34.5 miles per hour by Thursday.

Beaufort Mayor Billy Keyslerling told residents via a Saturday newsletter that an evacuation order could come as soon as Monday.

The state of SC also declared a state of emergency on Saturday.

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Isaac became the fifth hurricane of the 2018 Atlantic Season and the third storm being actively tracked in a busy weather weekend.

Officials in North Carolina were already bracing for impact.

The National Weather Service has also issued a typhoon watch in the US territory of Guam, where Tropical Storm Mangkhut is approaching from the east and is expected to bring damaging winds by Monday evening.

"We are mobilizing the state's resources to make sure we are prepared, and the people of SC must not hesitate to prepare for the possibility of a hurricane impacting our coast".

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The storm could intensify rapidly by Sunday, becoming a "major hurricane" by Monday.

"Make your plans now", South Carolina Governor Henry McMaster urged residents during a Sunday afternoon news conference. The storm is expected to continue on its westward path.

Meanwhile, over the Pacific Ocean, Hurricane Olivia is approaching Hawaii with maximum winds of 85 miles per hour.

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Tropical Storm Florence turns into a hurricane