Hurricane Florence is scheduled to hit the Southeast coast of the United States, bringing severe flooding and heavy winds that could affect millions of people.
The major storm is projected to slam into the Carolinas, as well as parts of Virginia, bringing hostile weather conditions for days on end.
Yet Florence is only the beginning and the Carolinas are not the only part of the nation dealing with severe storms.
Here are five important things you need to know about Florence and the overall storm watch. These include the presence of other hurricanes and some of the faith-based charities that are organizing relief efforts.
Hurricane Florence is expected to make landfall in the Carolinas either on Thursday evening or Friday morning, according to a report by weather.com Thursday morning.
While the system has been downgraded from a Category 4 to a Category 2 hurricane, Florence is still a dangerous storm expected to produce flash flooding and heavy winds, creating major damage.
The National Hurricane Center said that despite the downgrade "the wind field of the hurricane continues to grow in size."
"This evolution will produce storm surges similar to that of a more intense, but smaller, hurricane, and thus the storm surge values seen in the previous advisory are still valid," the National Hurricane Center added.
States of Emergency
In response to the forthcoming hurricane, multiple states have issued a state of emergency and ordered evacuations of approximately 1 million people from low-lying coastal areas.
President Donald Trump declared a state of emergency for states in the path of the storm, thus allowing the Department of Homeland Security and Federal Emergency Management Agency to coordinate relief efforts.
"FEMA is authorized to identify, mobilize, and provide at its discretion, equipment and resources necessary to alleviate the impacts of the emergency. Emergency protective measures, limited to direct federal assistance, will be provided at 75 percent federal funding," the White House said on Monday.
"Brock Long, administrator, FEMA, Department of Homeland Security, named Elizabeth Turner as the federal coordinating officer for federal recovery operations in the affected areas."
Tropical Storm Isaac
As the southeast coast of the United States braces for Hurricane Florence, other major storms are forming in the Atlantic and attacking other places. One example is Isaac.
Tropical Storm Isaac briefly got to hurricane strength earlier this week before weakening back to tropical storm levels. On Thursday, it began to batter the Lesser Antilles islands in the Caribbean, according to Accuweather.
Isaac is expected to travel through the Caribbean south of Puerto Rico, possibly striking Jamaica sometime between Sunday and Monday, bringing heavy rainfall.
"Residents and visitors of Jamaica will need to closely monitor the track of Isaac as well, as the storm may pass very close to the island by the end of the weekend, bringing with it heavy rain and gusty winds," reported Accuweather.
Tropical Storm Olivia
As the southeast United States deals with Florence and the Caribbean deals with Tropical Storm Isaac, Hawaii is dealing with Tropical Storm Olivia.
Olivia made landfall on the Hawaiian island of Maui on Wednesday, passing south of Oahu, and bringing heavy rain that flooded many roads.
The storm had a peak high of 40 miles per hour sustained winds and moved at about 20 miles per hour, according to the Central Pacific Hurricane Center.
"Remember that wind gusts can be much stronger near higher terrain, and in the upper floors of high-rise buildings," the Central Pacific Hurricane Center warned, according to CNN.
"Winds can also be especially gusty through gaps between mountains and where winds blow downslope."
Places to Donate
In addition to promised government aid, there are many faith-based entities that are taking on the effort to provide relief in response to Florence.
These include, but are not limited to: Baptists on Mission, the North Carolina Conference of the United Methodist Church, and Samaritan's Purse.
"Samaritan's Purse North American Ministries is poised and ready to respond in Jesus' Name with staff, equipment, and disaster relief units — tractor trailers filled with tools and supplies. Preparations for a possible deployment are already well underway," Samaritan's Purse said on its website.
"If a response is mounted, teams of volunteers will be mobilized to help homeowners with cleanup. Billy Graham Rapid Respond Team chaplains would also be called on to serve."