The storm could also to affect weather here in the United Kingdom, though the Met Office has said it is "uncertain" about what the impact could be.
Forecasts showed the storm lingering near the coast of the Carolinas, carrying days of heavy rains that could bring intense inland flooding from SC to Virginia. Some forecasts were calling for more than 200 millimetres of rain in the western part of the state.
This shift to the south certainly brings Charlotte into play for much heavier rainfall, and I think that's going to be the biggest issue that we're going to have to deal with in the Charlotte area is soaking heavy rains that could fall not only over a day but maybe several days after landfall.
At the White House, President Donald Trump urged people to "get out of its way".
Byard, the FEMA official, said "this storm is not going to be a glancing blow".
Watch more from Cooper above, and follow Florence's track below.
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People who thought they were safe from the onslaught of Hurricane Florence began boarding up and Georgia's governor declared a state of emergency Wednesday as uncertainty over the path of the monster storm spread worry along the Southeastern coast.
Meteorologists are warning of potentially catastrophic flooding in the area, with isolated amounts of up to 40 inches of rain expected in parts of SC.
A state of emergency has been declared in D.C. and in states, including Virginia and the Carolina's. This system, when it gets to the coast, is only going to be moving about three miles per hour.
At least 25 million residents are at risk from the storm and experts predict its current path could cause up to $170 billion worth of damage, hit up to 759,000 homes and businesses and become the costliest to ever hit the U.S.
Early Wednesday morning, Hurricane Florence was less than 600 miles away from the North Carolina coast moving quickly to the west/northwest at nearly 20 mph. And he had advice for coastal residents. Residents in some parts of the Carolinas have been ordered to evacuate.
Meanwhile, some of North Carolina's 2,100 industrial-size hog farmers are scrambling to drain waste pools containing manure before the hurricane hits, according to NPR. This storm is a slow-moving mammoth and will linger for days on the coast, heavily affecting not only North and SC but also Georgia and parts of Virginia before moving further inland, causing devastation to entire states throughout the weekend.