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Q&A: With heavy storms in the U.S., what to expect?

Emergency officials are urging residents to prepare for heavy storms, which is expected to hit the east coast and Hawaii in the coming week what is the highlight of this year’s hurricane season.

Coming in from the Atlantic Ocean, Tropical Storm Florence is expected to landfall Thursday as a level 3 hurricane or more driven by the wind, which may serve as a guide for it as far south as Florida or as far north as New England.

Meanwhile, the Hurricane Olivia is forecast to hit the Islands of hawaii as a tropical storm on Wednesday, bringing heavy rains, just two weeks after the Hurricane Lane caused major flooding.

A look at what forecasters are predicting that storms and the rest of the season:

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WHAT DO WE KNOW ABOUT THE STORMS NOW?

Tropical Storm Florence was the gathering force Saturday, with the National Hurricane Center expect it to be a hurricane overnight. Five days of expected arrival, there is still great uncertainty about where it will hit and at what intensity, but the latest models show that it is most likely to make a landfall in the southeast of the V. S., between northern Florida and North Carolina.

Still, there is a chance that it can be pushed further to the north and save along the mid-Atlantic or New England coast, threatening to make landfall between Virginia and Massachusetts. Regardless of where it lands, there is a chance that it could stall and pummel the coasts days.

The latest models on Saturday show that it’s becoming less likely that the storm will veer north and miss the mainland of the U.S. as a whole. At the minimum, residents along the east coast is told to expect heavy rainfall and storm surges, with the possibility of heavy winds.

Forecasters are also keeping an eye on two storms gathering behind Florence. Tropical Storm Helene is expected that the Cabo Verde islands on Saturday but is predicted to miss from the mainland of the USA, A tropical depression that could become Tropical Storm Isaac is on its way to the Caribbean and brings a greater chance to bend in a northerly direction to Puerto Rico and the mainland, possibly as a hurricane.

It is still uncertain whether the Hurricane Olivia will be arriving in the Hawaiian Islands, but at least meteorologists think that it will come very close and deliver a new round of rainfall.

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WHEN WILL WE HAVE A BETTER IDEA OF WHETHER THEY POSE A THREAT?

Each day brings a clearer picture of the risks by the storms. Jeff Masters, co-founder of the Weather Underground, says the aircraft collect information about the weather began to fly to Florence on Saturday, which should provide the data that will lead to a big boost in the reliability of models on Sunday.

Isaac the route is still very uncertain and will be of the days. Forecasters are more confident that Olivia will affect Hawaii, with the path and the intensity of clearness in the next few days.

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WHAT ARE THE FACTORS THAT GIVE FLORENCE A CHANCE ON A PARTICULARLY STRONG HURRICANE?

By the time it reached the East Coast, Florence may strengthen into a major hurricane. Winds higher in Florence are likely to weaken, making it time to gather itself and gain strength over the ocean, experts say. And it is also approaching the water where the temperature is slightly warmer than average, so the heat that the storm may turn into stronger winds.

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HOW SHOULD PEOPLE IN AREAS VULNERABLE TO HURRICANES STAY PREPARED?

The residents in the evacuation zones are encouraged to have a plan to flee if the order comes. Others should have at least a week’s supply of food, water and medicine for their family and their pets.

Brian McNoldy, a senior researcher at the University of Miami school of marine and atmospheric science, according to the residents, which should keep gas cans of fuel for their cars and generators, and should take some cash in case of electronic payment systems down after the storms passed.

To prevent a headache down the line, residents are also encouraged to keep insurance documents in a safe place, for the time.

North Carolina’s governor has already issued a state of emergency on Friday as the storm advanced, while officials in other countries say they’re monitoring forecasts.

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WHAT EXPECTATIONS HAVE PREDICTORS FOR THE REST OF THE HURRICANE SEASON?

The second week of September is the peak of the hurricane season, so the flurry of activity, it is no surprise to forecasters. After the current round of storms, though, long-range models suggest a lull for a number of weeks.

Masters said, there is a chance for an active period of mid-October, that would mean the end of the busiest stretch of the season.

“I don’t think we’re quite yet done,” he said, “but certainly as much as September goes, this is the big week.”

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Collin Binkley can be reached at https://twitter.com/cbinkley

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