On Monday NOAA upgraded Florence from a Category 2 to a Category 4, making the storm one of the fastest stroms to be upgraded in the Atlantic in recent memory. It is expected to get worse. Forecasters are suggesting that the storm could be upgraded to a Category 5 storm, the highest classification for a storm with winds exceeding- and sustaining- 156 MPH.
If the storm continues on the current path it is expected to tear through the Outerbanks and into the mainland coast of North Carolina, wreaking havoc on the South East and Mid Atlantic regions. Government agencies have ordered record numbers of truckloads of relief supplies to stage freight in prestaging areas to be available once the storm passes and relief and rescue mission work begins.
If Florence were to hit the United States coast as a Category 5, it would be one of four storms to do so. The other three were: Andrew, Camille, and an unnamed storm in 1935. Only two Category 4 storms have hit North Carolina in recorded history.