Published: Sun, September 16, 2018
Science | By Michele Flores

Mother, infant among those killed when Hurricane Florence hit North Carolina

Mother, infant among those killed when Hurricane Florence hit North Carolina

The storm originally made landfall at Wrightsville Beach, North Carolina, on Friday morning as a category one hurricane.

Its storm surge and the prospect of 1 to 3½ feet of rain were considered a bigger threat than its winds, which had dropped off from an alarming 140 miles per hour - Category 4 - earlier in the week.

The National Hurricane Center reported Friday that "catastrophic flash flooding is expected to worsen today across Southeast NC and Northeast SC".

North Carolina alone is forecast to get 9.6 trillion gallons, enough to cover the Tar Heel state to a depth of about 10 inches (25 centimeters). In South and North Carolina evacuated residents of coastal areas is just over 1.5 million people.

Florence was seen as a major test for the Federal Emergency Management Agency, which was heavily criticized as slow and unprepared a year ago for Hurricane Maria in Puerto Rico, where the storm was blamed for almost 3,000 deaths in the desperate aftermath.

New Bern Police Lt. David Daniels said early Friday morning that between 150 and 200 people had been rescued so far, with others still waiting for help.

Hurricane-force winds extend outward up to 35 miles (55 kilometers) from the center and tropical-storm-force winds extend outward up to 170 miles (280 kilometers).

North Carolina Gov. Roy Cooper urged people to take the storm seriously. Significant weakening is expected over the weekend. The record was set by Hurricane Helene in 1958 with 135 miles per hour.

New Bern resident George Zaytoun chose not to evacuate and is trapped inside his home.

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North Carolina alone is forecast to get 9.6 trillion gallons, enough to cover the Tar Heel state to a depth of about 10 inches. The storm has since been downgraded to a tropical storm . "I was looking for water moccasins to hit me at any time", he said.

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Florence 'unloading epic amounts of rainfall' in North Carolina
When Hurricane Florence made landfall in North Caroline, Weather Channel reporter Mike Seidel was out in the storm reporting live. As of 5 a.m., Florence was 25 miles (55 kilometers) east of Wilmington, North Carolina.

Some of the worst flooding from the monster storm was in the town of New Bern, North Carolina, where the Neuse River overflowed its banks, flooding streets and trapping many people in their homes.

The state's transportation secretary, James Trogdon, said the state may see "flood events" that normally only occur once every 1,000 years.

Power outages have hit the Charlotte area as Tropical Storm Florence makes its way across the Carolinas.

Officials have warned people against entering attics, so as to avoid drowning, unless they have a means to cut through to the roof.

One person died at the West Brunswick High School shelter Thursday morning, according to a spokesperson for Brunswick County. On land, wind gusts hit the lower triple digits, but just off the coast, buoys recorded wind gusts at 112 miles per hour shortly before landfall.

Tornadoes are also possible in the eastern North Carolina area according to the NHC, as wind and rain impact land.

Winds of up to 110km/h are also expected for several days as the weather system slowly grinds over. McMaster's remarks are set to begin at 2:30 p.m.

North Carolina Army National Guard soldiers were sent to a home along the 100 block of El Nora Lane in Otway, North Carolina, on Friday in reference to two deaths there.

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