Florence Could Bring Five Days of Drenching Rain to the Carolinas

(Bloomberg) -- Along with a 12-foot (3.7-meter) ocean surge and winds as high as 140 miles (225 kilometers) per hour, Hurricane Florence could hit the Carolinas with 30 inches of drenching rain for as long as five days, flooding local rivers and low-land basements.

That’s the view of at least one model for the storm that shows Florence stalling after making landfall late Thursday or early Friday, blocked by a high pressure system over the Midwest. In that case it could hug the coastline and maintain its strength by drawing off warm ocean water.

That scenario is a nasty reminder of Hurricane Harvey, which dumped more than 50 inches of rain on the Houston area a year ago, devastating sections of the city. That storm flooded hundreds of thousands of homes and businesses, wreaking $125 billion in damages.

“That is a very significant scenario there,” said Anthony Chipriano, a meteorologist with Radiant Solutions in Gaithersburg, Maryland.

Other models also show the storm stalling, but only one, so far, holds it just off the coast where it can still gather strength.

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