--A mass exodus is underway along parts of coastal North and South Carolina and Virginia, as Hurricane Florence approaches...with landfall now predicted Friday morning.
North Carolina's governor warned those planning to stay, "don't bet your life on riding out a monster."  The Navy has begun repositioning more than 100 fixed wing aircraft and helicopters from its bases in the Norfolk, Virginia area ahead of Hurricane Florence. The National Weather Service says more than 5.4 million people are under hurricane warnings and watches; Florence remains a Category 4 storm with 140-mile-an hour winds. The National Hurricane Center calls Florence "dangerous" and predicts major problems from storm surge and rain...15-25 inches of rain are possible with as much as 35 inches in some spots. President Trump met with FEMA officials and called the storm "tremendously big and tremendously wet."
--The latest models on Hurricane Florence show a southbound trend that takes the Washington, D.C., region out of the most serious impact zone, but heavy rain could still cause flooding. Eighty first responders with Maryland Task Force One have truckloads of gear, including boats, rescue supplies, cases of water and packed suitcases, ready to go when they got the directions to head to South Carolina. 

In the Pacific we are watching Tropical Storm Olivia, on its way to hit Hawaii Islands on Wednesday morning as a Tropical Storm with winds near 50 mph!  Tropical Storm Warning for Hawaii, Maui, Oahu and Tropical Storm Watch Kauai!  

President Trump called his administration's response to Hurricane Maria in Puerto Rico — where an independent study suggests nearly 3,000 people may have died — an "incredible unsung success."  "I think Puerto Rico was incredibly successful. Puerto Rico was actually our toughest one of all because it is an island," Trump said Tuesday in the Oval Office.  As for Hurricane Florence, now barreling toward the coast of the US, the president assured reporters that his administration is "totally prepared, ready… we're as ready as anybody has ever been.”

Pretrial hearing in DC District Court ahead of Manafort's trial on obstruction and conspiracy charges.  President Trump's former campaign chairman was convicted last month on 8 counts of bank and tax fraud.  Manafort is reportedly in talks with Special Counsel Robert Mueller's office about a possible plea deal, according to The Washington Post.

President Vladimir Putin said on Wednesday that Russia has identified the two men that Britain named as suspects in the poisoning of a former Russian spy, and that there is “nothing criminal” about them. Britain last week charged two alleged agents of Russia’s military intelligence agency in absentia with the poisoning of former Russian spy Sergei Skripal and his daughter Yulia. Britain blames the Russian government for the attack, a claim that Moscow has vehemently denied. Speaking at a panel of an economic conference in Russia’s Far East Putin insisted they do not work for the military.  

The White House hosts a reception for Medal of Honor recipients Wednesday afternoon.

--The arrest warrant affidavit for a Dallas police officer who shot a man after she says she mistakenly entered his apartment has prompted more questions than answers for the victim's family, whose lawyers called the officer's scenario "highly implausible." The narrative that Officer Amber Guyger gave to investigators has been contradicted by at least two independent witnesses and flies in the face of facts they've gathered of the Thursday night killing at the South Side Flats apartment complex in Dallas, attorneys for the family of Botham Jean say, as they push for a murder charge.
-- ABC has obtained a copy of the search warrant used by Texas Rangers as they gathered evidence inside Botham Jean’s apartment. According to court documents, Rangers seized Jean’s cell phone and computer, along with standard blood evidence and video surveillance. The short warrant synopsis mentions a neighbor hearing “an exchange of words.”

Maggie Taraska, 17, was on her first solo flight at her local airport in Beverly, Massachusetts, headed for Portland, Maine, when the possible disaster unfolded. "I got really scared, nervous, obviously," she told ABC News. "I had done emergency procedures before, but you don't do them if you lose a wheel. No one really thinks that's going to happen to them. And I mean, I was all by myself so I was just terrified."

Cardinal Wuerl sent a letter to Washington, D.C. priests saying he plans to meet with Pope Francis in the future. Wuerl said he will discuss his resignation as well as the Pennsylvania grand jury report on sexual abuse in the church.

Sheriff's officials in Oregon say a woman who was hiking alone near Mount Hood was killed by a cougar.  It appears to be the first fatal cougar attack in the wild in Oregon. 55-year-old Diana Bober's body was found off a trail and 200 feet down a steep hillside.

The American Association for Cancer Research released its annual Cancer Progress Report, noting good news achieved through federally-funded research. Data shows that the cancer death rate among adults in this country declined 26% in the fourteen years leading up to 2015.

New iPhones and other new toys expected to unveiled at Apple's annual show and tell at its headquarters in Cupertino, California Wednesday.
The company's expected to unveil it's biggest and most expensive iPhone.