Hurricane Florence is starting to hit the Carolinas, bringing winds up to 169 kmh — here's how it compares to other destructive storms in US history

Getty Images

Rain and wind from Hurricane Florence started hitting the North Carolina coast on Thursday. Now a Category 2 storm with maximum winds of 105 mph (169 kmh), Florence is bringing life-threatening rainfall and storm surge.

Some counties in North Carolina and South Carolina have been ordered to evacuate, particularly near the coast.

While it remains to be seen just what impact the storm will have, Florence is expected to bring storm surge up to 13 feet in some areas, and up to 40 inches of rain could fall.

For comparison, here’s a look at the strength of and damage caused by other recent, notable storms that hit the US.

In many cases, the maximum wind speed isn’t the only factor in just how costly a hurricane is. Often, storm surge – the rapid rise of water pushed onto shore as a result of a hurricane’s winds – and rainfall can have disastrous consequences.

5 major us hurricanes comparedSamantha Lee/Business Insider

NOW WATCH: Briefing videos

Business Insider Emails & Alerts

Site highlights each day to your inbox.

Follow Business Insider Australia on Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, and Instagram.