A hurricane hunter with the National Oceanic & Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) flew into the category three Hurricane Florence and reported back Wednesday what he was seeing.

Florence is currently churning through the Atlantic, only a few hundred miles off the coast of Wilmington, N.C.

"There's really not a lot of good news," NOAA flight director Paul Flaherty said on "Shepard Smith Reporting." "It wants to get stronger," he said of the storm.

Flaherty said there is a small piece of good news, in that the "flow" in the southeastern quadrant of the storm has been reduced slightly.

However, he reiterated that just that minor factor alone is not enough to cause the cyclone to make major changes.

Fox News reported that sustained winds were picking up a bit along the North Carolina coast.

Readings of 15 miles per hour were already being recorded in Emerald Isle, a popular beach town on Bogue Banks near Cape Lookout.


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On another barrier island just below the Bogue Banks, Steve Harrigan reported live from North Topsail Beach, where visitors and residents were largely heeding warnings from Gov. Roy Cooper (D-N.C.) to evacuate. Harrigan's crew captured images of boarded-up homes and empty beaches.

Shepard Smith and Flaherty said reports showed storm surge from the system is likely to be felt dozens of miles inland, including along the Neuse River Basin -- which stretches inward from New Bern toward Rocky Mount and Nashville, N.C.

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