That funding can not be spent on disaster response, they said. Landfall was expected sometime late Thursday and FEMA officials said Wednesday was the last day for people to get out safely.
Even with some weakening that's predicted just before it makes landfall, the storm "is expected to remain a risky major hurricane as it approaches the coastline", the hurricane center said.
"We will reopen these stores once we complete our post-hurricane assessment and determine that it's safe for our employees and customers to return", the statement read.
"This has an opportunity of being a very devastating storm".
Fierce winds and massive waves are expected to lash the coasts of North and SC and Virginia even before Florence makes landfall by early Friday, bringing a storm surge as much as 13 feet (4 meters).
This means the storm will have less of an impact in northern North Carolina and southern Virginia and more of an impact on southern North Carolina, South Carolina and northern Georgia.
Gov. Roy Cooper is reminding North Carolinians that Hurricane Florence is a storm that shouldn't be taken lightly.
This comes as Hurricane Florence is expected to make landfall in North Carolina late Thursday through early Friday.
A state of emergency has also been declared in Maryland, North Carolina, South Carolina, Virginia and Washington.
At 11am (1600 GMT), the eye of the storm was about 485 miles (785 kms) southeast of Wilmington, North Carolina, moving in a northwest direction at 15 mph (24 kph).
For many of those under evacuation orders, getting out of harm's way has proved difficult, as airlines cancelled flights and motorists had a hard time finding gas. Dubbed the "Storm of a lifetime", the National Weather Service expects the hurricane to reach the Carolinas on Thursday or Friday, and may linger over the weekend - bringing with it "catastrophic" winds and flooding rainfall.
Emergency preparations in the area included activating 2,800 National Guard troops in North Carolina, stockpiling food, setting up shelters, switching traffic patterns so that major roads led away from shore and securing 16 nuclear power reactors in the three-state region. Many areas in the low-lying city flood with routine rain storms, causing street closures and detours. Cars and trucks full of people and belongings streamed inland. Flooding well inland could wreak environmental havoc by washing over industrial waste sites and hog farms.
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