Hurricane Florence expected to be stronger than past hurricanes Carolinas experienced

(WSVN) - The Carolinas haven’t dealt with a storm as strong as Hurricane Florence in decades. 7’s Nicole Linsalata continues our live coverage from Wrightsville Beach, North Carolina.

All eyes are on Hurricane Florence as it barrels toward the Carolinas. Unfortunately, the Carolinas have been in this dangerous situation before.

Twenty-nine years ago this month, the last Category 4 storm to hit the Carolinas was Hurricane Hugo.

Hurricane Hugo struck just north of Charleston with 140 mile per hour sustained winds. The hurricane had already created calamity in the Caribbean and continued to do so in South Carolina.

More than 20 people were killed in the Palmetto State. The hurricane which continued on into North Carolina as a Category 2 storm caused billions of dollars in the Carolinas, where people were stunned by the damage they saw.

Survivor 1: “It was very rough. Look at my dog. See the dogs were petrified.”

Reporter: “When was this house built?”

Survivor 1:” In 1790.”

Two other Category 4 hurricanes have hit the Carolinas in recorded weather history.

Hurricane Hazel struck the North and South Carolina border area 64 years ago in 1954.

More than 400 people were killed in Haiti before it hit the U.S. Coast. At least 19 people were killed in the Carolinas.

Five years later, Category 4 Hurricane Gracie hit southern South Carolina. That storm killed at least 10 people in South Carolina and in Georgia.

The last major hurricane of any type to hit the Carolinas was in 1996 — Category 3 Fran.

The winds, which peaked at 120 miles per hour, made landfall near Cape Fear, North Carolina. Twenty-six people were killed in the U.S, and 14 of them in North Carolina.

Damage in the Carolinas was estimated to be in the billions of dollars.

It’s rare for major hurricanes to hit the Carolinas and these words uttered almost 30 years ago during Hugo remain accurate as of now.

Survivor 2: “It’s just a terrible thing. The storm was extremely severe. A Category 4, biggest hurricane this city has had in a century. Maybe in history.”

But now, here comes Florence.

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