Forecasters urge caution as storm churns in Gulf


A NOAA Hurricane Hunter plane that investigated the oncoming Tropical Storm Isaac Wednesday evening and found that the system has weakened a bit, according to the National Weather Service.

A spokeswoman said: "Basically Helene is in the Atlantic at the moment and is crossing the Atlantic and is expected to track towards the UK".

A mother and baby were killed when a tree fell on a house, according to a tweet from Wilmington police.

Meanwhile, what could be the world's most unsafe storm at the moment is Super Typhoon Mangkhut, which now has winds of 165 miles per hour (with 200 miles per hour gusts) and is taking aim on the Philippines, according to the Joint Typhoon Warning Center. "It's possible that the west coast of Wales and Cornwall could get some winds as well, but we will get a clearer picture of what to expect very soon". Current estimates have Isaac passing nearly 150 miles south of St. Croix early Friday morning. The storm is expected to slow down and possibly stall near or over the coast on Friday.

Helene is among a glut of tropical storms brewing in the region, with mass evacuations under way in southern U.S. states as Florence barrels across Virginia and the Carolinas.

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The hurricane center said the storm will eventually break up over the southern Appalachians and make a sharp rightward swing to the northeast, its rainy remnants moving into the mid-Atlantic states and New England by the middle of next week.

The Barbados Meteorological Services continues to closely monitor the progress of Tropical Storm Isaac over the Atlantic. A small-craft warning and a high-surf advisory will be in effect from 6 p.m., today until 6 a.m. Friday, September 14.

Shepard Smith and Flaherty said reports showed storm surge from the system is likely to be felt dozens of miles inland, including along the Neuse River Basin - which stretches inward from New Bern toward Rocky Mount and Nashville, N.C.

It is predicted the Carolinas could begin feeling tropical storm force winds late Wednesday or early Thursday. The Associated Press reported that sixty people were rescued from a motel that collapsed, and, since Florence is moving slowly, the heavy rain and strong winds aren't expected to let up any time soon. North Myrtle Beach, South Carolina, had about 7 inches. That's enough to fill the Chesapeake Bay, or cover the entire state of Texas with almost 4 inches (10 centimetres) of water.

"WE ARE COMING TO GET YOU", the city of New Bern tweeted around 2 a.m.