Sam Lillo, a meteorologist at the University of Oklahoma, tweeted on Sunday that the National Hurricane Center bulletin considered Hurricane Florence the Atlantic storm that has accelerated most rapidly in the last 20 years. It’s a pretty strong description, but it’s based on the data collected so far.

A study published at the beginning of this year indicates the magnitude and the speed at which storms are intensifying over the Atlantic is increasing. Using satellite data collected between 1986 and 2015, researchers have discovered that the speed at which storms are intensifying is growing at a rate of 7 km / h per decade in the central and eastern Atlantic. Scientists attribute this trend to a positive phase in the oscillation of the Atlantic, a measure that is influenced by the warm temperature of water, but do not rule out the effect that climate change may have on this increase in temperature.

Whatever the reason, Florence’s impact could be acute and potentially deadly. The storm is expected to land on the east coast late Thursday with strong winds and torrential rains.

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