The projected path for Hurricane Florence shifted south toward South Carolina, according to a Wednesday morning update from the National Weather Service. That means the Triangle could avoid a direct hit as the Category 4 storm moves inland.
However, the shift could place much of North Carolina on the storm’s right side — or “dirty side.”
“In general, the strongest winds in a hurricane are found on the right side of the storm because the motion of the hurricane also contributes to its swirling winds,” according to NOAA.
If the storm is moving west, as Florence is projected to do after making landfall near Wilmington, N.C., the right side of the storm would be to the north of the storm, NOAA said. If the storm moves north, then the right side of the storm would be to the east.
The difference between being on the right side or left side could be as much as 20 mph if the storm is moving at 10 mph, according to NOAA’s Hurricane Research Division.
“Strong winds could also spread inland into portions of the Carolinas,” the National Weather Service warned in a tweet Wednesday morning.
High winds can take down trees and power lines. The National Weather Service recommends bringing in any unsecured objects from patios and balconies and securing other objects such as lawn furniture or garbage cans that could cause damage if hit by high winds.