U.S. capital under state of emergency for Hurricane Florence

Agence France-Presse

Posted at Sep 12 2018 12:57 AM | Updated as of Sep 12 2018 01:32 PM

The U.S. capital of Washington, D.C. declared a state of emergency Tuesday as Hurricane Florence bears down on the East Coast, threatening torrential rain and flooding in the Washington region.

Mayor Muriel Bowser told a news conference the emergency was "effective immediately" and that the measure "ensures that we will have the resources we need to prepare for Florence."

More than a million coastal residents have been ordered to leave their homes ahead of the storm's projected arrival on Thursday, with emergencies already declared in the states of North and South Carolina, Virginia, and Maryland.

The 15-day emergency signed by Bowser noted that Florence was "forecasted to produce high winds, rainfall and storm surge" with "serious widespread effects in the region."

The last time the U.S. capital declared a state of emergency was in January 2016 when a winter storm dubbed "Snowzilla" blanketed the capital and its region in knee-deep snow.