Hurricane Florence's Raging Winds Hit North Carolina, Downing Trees

Hurricane-force winds from Florence hit North Carolina so hard they are reportedly downing trees.

CNN reports that the powerful storm has not only ripped whole trees in half, but that it has also already torn the roof off of a small building.

Additionally, it is now reported that almost 70,000 people in North Carolina are currently without power.

While state officials were hoping residents would evacuate in time, Beaufort Mayor Everette Newton recently revealed that at this point it is "too late for people in the his area to safely get out of harm's way.

"They need to go ahead and shelter in place, hunker down, it's really dangerous out right now, with lots of limbs coming down, lots of debris going around," he added. "They need to shelter in place."

Another new report from CNN indicates that Hurricane Florence's strength has slightly increased, up to 105 mph winds.

At this time the storm does remain a category 2 hurricane, however, with the eye located around 90 miles east-southeast of Wilmington, North Carolina, according to Weather.com.

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Weather experts are saying that the Jacksonville and New Bern, North Carolina areas will be the first to experience the full-force of Hurricane Florence, with residents likely to see the storm picking up between 6 p.m. and 9 p.m. on Friday.

After that, it will continue to work its way upward and inland, with projections suggesting that it could affect states as far north as new Hampshire.