An astronaut-eye's view of Hurricane Florence from the International Space Station shows why everyone is kind of freaking out.
There is usually a lot of hype about incoming hurricanes. And unfortunately, given the new normal, the storms often live up to it. Last year was a doozy. Now we are in the throes of concern about what Hurricane Florence may have on her mind. And as unpredictable as they may be, the view from on high is pretty chilling.
A high definition camera outside the International Space Station (ISS) captured this "stark and sobering view" (shown at the bottom) of Flo at 7:50 a.m. EDT on Sept. 12, noting:
NOAA’s Suomi NPP satellite passed over the eye of powerful Category 4 Hurricane Florence and found the storm over 400 miles in diameter and the capability to generate very heavy rainfall.
NOAA’s National Hurricane Center has warned: “Dangerous Florence heading toward the U.S. southeast coast and is expected to bring life-threatening storm surge and rainfall to portions of the Carolinas and Mid-Atlantic States.”
Here are a few views.
And here's the video from the ISS – which made me realize another great benefit of being an astronaut. You stay out of harm's way, ironically enough.
To put things in perspective, Florence is about 400 miles in diameter. NASA explains that 400 miles is the distance from Baltimore to Boston. "This is a life-threatening situation," they add. "In some areas, the NHC said that storm surge could be as high as 13 feet, which is over the first floor of a house or building."
So yeah, batten down the hatches and please be safe!