Hurricane Florence will threaten North Carolina Thursday with the chance at being the strongest storm in its history. It will hit the coastal areas, slow to a crawl, and move inland toward the Piedmont Thursday and Friday.
As of Monday evening, Florence rapidly strengthened into a major hurricane, at Category 4 strength with 140 mph winds. It's expected to maintain that strength, or even get stronger as it approaches over the next few days. For us here in the Piedmont, we need to be ready to go by Thursday.
The Piedmont should plan on the possibility of seeing winds of 40-60 mph, with locally higher gusts. This is enough to create large, long lasting power outages.