While Hurricane Florence continues barreling toward the Carolina coast, the Caribbean got some good news Wednesday: Isaac appears to be weakening.
Florence is unlike Hurricane Hugo, a category 4 storm that struck Charleston in 1989. Isaac is forecast to gradually weaken over the next few days, and could degenerate into a tropical wave during that time. Florence remains a risky Cat 4 with max winds of 130 miles per hour with a NW movement of 15 miles per hour.
Although Florence was downgraded from Category 4 status, it is still considered an extremely unsafe storm with maximum sustained winds near 125 miles per hour.
NOAA's National Hurricane Center issued a Public Advisory at 5 a.m.
It's unclear whether Isaac could reach the US mainland.
Emma Smith of the Met Office added: "Helene is moving up from the Atlantic towards us".
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He said the agency will be monitoring Florence and holding meetings with the state Division of Emergency Management.
The 8 a.m. forecast on Hurricane Florence reinforces projections that the storm's path will shift slightly to the southeast as it closes in on the Carolinas.
Tropical storm warnings were in effect for Martinique, Dominica and Guadeloupe, while watches were in effect for Montserrat, St. Kitts and Nevis, Antigua, and Saba and St. Eustatius.
From the Ocracoke Inlet to the North Carolina-Virginia border and from the South Santee River to North Myrtle Beach, the NHC forecast that water could rise as high as 6 feet.
Two high pressure ridges are still expected to be strong enough to force Florence to stall just before, or after, it makes landfall somewhere near the North Carolina/South Carolina border early Friday.
The path of Hurricane Florence is still set squarely on the Carolinas, but early Wednesday it shifted south and west, encompassing more of SC and western North Carolina. The storm is moving toward the west-southwest near 6 miles per hour (9 km/h). Florence, the most ominous for U.S. residents, is expected to make landfall today.