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Hurricane Florence churns ocean off Carolina coast

Outer bands lash Carolinas

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MYRTLE BEACH, Fla. – The long big slosh has begun.

Meteorologists say the leading edge of Florence has arrived in North Carolina, with tropical storm-force winds carrying drenching bands of rainfall onto some beach communities.

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Florence will likely bring days of rain totaling three feet or more, and a storm surge of ocean water that rises to more than 12 feet near the center of the storm.

Gov. Roy Cooper says he knows many people are watching the changing storm predictions and categories, and he's concerned because some are even saying that "North Carolina is getting a break." It's not.

"Please hear my message," he says. "We cannot underestimate this storm."

Cooper is saying: "Don't relax; don't get complacent. Stay on guard. This is a powerful storm that can kill."