'Monster' Hurricane Florence Barrels Toward the Carolinas

The storm could hit Category 5 strength before making landfall.

Hurricane Florence is bearing down on the Carolinas, poised to slam the coastline Friday. 

The monster storm showed signs of slowing down as it inched closer to the U.S., according to the National Hurricane Center. New projections indicate the now-Category 3 hurricane will move slightly southeast, with landfall expected between Wilmington and Morehead City, North Carolina.

Meteorologists are warning of potentially catastrophic flooding in the area, with isolated amounts of up to 40 inches of rain expected in parts of South Carolina. Coastal North Carolina could see 20 to 30 inches as well. 

A dangerous storm surge could devastate the coastline, where the high winds will push destructive waves ashore. 

Florence currently has maximum sustained winds of 125 mph, though it is forecast to strengthen Wednesday, potentially becoming a Category 5 storm before weakening again as it heads for the East Coast.