Hurricane Florence, currently labeled as a category 2 hurricane, is expected to move near or along the East coast sometime Friday. 300 miles of coastline received a hurricane warning at the beginning of the week, placing nearly 1 million people in need of evacuation.
North Carolina Gov. Ray Cooper released a statement to the State’s residents on Wednesday:
Brock Long, the administrator of the Federal Emergency Management Agency, also issued a warning to those on the East coast saying that it is possible their power could be out for weeks. Thursday a report was issued that approximately 12,000 North Carolina residents have lost power in the hours before the hurricane is expected to make landfall.
Despite warnings, some residents of North Carolina, South Carolina, and Virginia still aren’t evacuating. In the case of South Carolina’s MacDougall Correctional Institution, the state is refusing to move inmates, regardless of the evacuation orders.
Many critics are worried that the government and FEMA might not be prepared to deal with the hurricane. After Hurricane Maria hit Puerto Rico, resulting in a death count of nearly 3,000 people, FEMA expressed that it vastly underestimated how much water and food was needed to prepare for the storm.
President Trump denied claims that the government failed in handling Puerto Rico, saying that his administration was “incredibly successful” and that he thinks the government’s handling of Hurricane Maria was “one of the best jobs [that has] ever been done” in regards to hurricane relief.
Puerto Rico’s governor disagreed with the President’s assessment and released his own statement:
Not long after being asked about the government’s handling of Puerto Rico, the President took to Twitter to deny the official death count and blame Democrats for making him “look as bad as possible”:
FEMA released a detailed report assessing the agency’s response to the 2017 storm season. In this report, the agency showed that it failed to prepare for Hurricane Maria because the government hadn’t anticipated dealing with two hurricanes.
Recently, a budgeting document surfaced that showed that the Trump administration cut FEMA’s budget by $10 million and used the funds to support ICE. This has further raised questions from critics about if FEMA has the funding to properly prepare for Hurricane Florence.
Follow the link below for live updates on Hurricane Florence: