Hurricane Florence slows as it nears US Atlantic coastline

13 September 2018 23:31 Source:ICIS News

HOUSTON (ICIS)--Hurricane Florence is creeping towards the US East coast at Category 2 strength, the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) said on Thursday, with ports and plants in the area closed.

NOAA said that maximum sustained winds have decreased to near 100 miles/hour (155 km/hour) with higher gusts.

Hurricanes can disrupt the North American petrochemical industry by shutting down production plants and disrupting the operations of customers. Flooding can shut down highways and rail lines, and storms can close ports for days.

North and South Carolina have a number of polyethylene terephthalate (PET) plants.

DAK Americas said it has idled its PET plants in Fayetteville, North Carolina and Cooper River, South Carolina.

The South Carolina Ports has closed its gate and vessel operations for most of its areas, as has North Carolina's Wilmington and Morehead City ports.

The Atlantic hurricane season began on 1 June and will end on 30 November.

By David Haydon