More Than 1 Million People Ordered To Evacuate As Hurricane Florence Approaches

The Category 4 storm is expected to hit the Carolinas and Virginia late Thursday or early Friday. All along the coast, people are being urged — or ordered — to get out, and get out early.
Marcus Thurston and his family cut short their vacation and leave their hotel in Myrtle Beach, S.C., on Tuesday, ahead of the arrival of Hurricane Florence. Source: Joe Raedle

Updated at 1:39 p.m. E.T.

In Charleston, S.C., a major interstate is reversing direction for about 100 miles, sending every lane inland — even earlier than originally scheduled.

In the Outer Banks, N.C., where tourists and residents rely on a few bridges and ferries for access to the mainland, authorities are warning residents to get out immediately. The state's governor has taken the unprecedented step of issuing a state-level, mandatory evacuation order, instead of relying on local governments.

And in coastal Virginia, where the sun is shining and the sky is blue, the state's emergency management website crashed as hundreds of thousands of people tried to look up mandatory evacuation maps.

Wide swaths of North Carolina, South Carolina and Virginia are preparing for the arrival of Hurricane Florence — currently a Category 4 storm with 130 mph maximum

You're reading a preview, sign up to read more.

More from NPR

NPR4 min read
Jimmy Cobb, The Pulse Of 'Kind Of Blue,' Dies At 91
The drummer's subtle and steady hand guided some of jazz's most beloved recordings, including Miles Davis's iconic Kind Of Blue.
NPR4 min readSociety
6 Pieces Of Advice From A Veteran Contact Tracer And A Newbie
Get friendly with community leaders; be prepared to be judged by others. Disease detectives from California and Liberia share their best insights.
NPR3 min read
Here's How The Pandemic Is Changing America's Plans For Its Newest Spaceship
Later this week, NASA and SpaceX will launch the first rocket carrying astronauts from U.S. soil since the end of the space shuttle era. But COVID-19 has forced some changes to their plans.