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

Tropical storm Florence dumps metres of rain on Carolinas

North Myrtle Beach, South Carolina, had about 7 inches.

Low-lying coastal areas saw storm surges overtaking dune barriers. It continues to chug west, slowing down from 5 miles per hour to 2 miles per hour.

"Residents should not let their guard down", North Carolina Emergency Management tweeted.

Evacuations underway in North Carolina.

The aquatic mammals are seen swimming against the current of the storm surge as it pounds the coastline near Wilmington, North Carolina, yesterday.

More than 100 people were rescued and up to 75 more were awaiting rescue on Saturday morning, according to a town official. Dozens more were pulled from a collapsed hotel. The city tweeted early September 14 that 150 people were awaiting rescue.

Forecasters say the center of Hurricane Florence is hovering just inland near Cape Fear, North Carolina. Eventually, a volunteer rescue team from IN arrived with a boat and rescued them.

A day after Florence's landfall in North Carolina, water is shaping up to be the storm's deadliest impact - and the rains will only keep coming as flood damage mounts.

Screaming winds bent trees toward the ground and raindrops flew sideways as Florence's leading edge moved in for an extended stay along the coast. "Don't drive across standing or moving water", the governor said, urging people to heed evacuation orders.

"The slow motion of the storm will make this a very prolonged flood event", Reid Hawkins, science officer for the National Weather Service office in Wilmington, said in a briefing.

Cowan said he anxious that the floods would destroy numerous crops that drive the local agricultural economy.

"Surviving this storm will be a test of endurance, teamwork, common sense and patience".

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Hurricane Florence begins battering the Carolinas
He said he has been through this many times in his 15 years in the Myrtle Beach area and that "nothing is going to happen". Weather forecasts estimate that the Category 2 storm could dump 17 trillion gallons of rain on the East Coast.

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As for the landslides, Gov. Henry McMaster did warn about possible landslides in the state, but he was referring to northwestern portions of the state, not the Grand Strand.

More than 80,000 people were already without power as the storm began buffeting the coast, and more than 12,000 were in shelters.

Prisoners were affected, too.

If Florence doesn't wipe out oceanfront homes on stilts along the Carolinas coast, rising sea levels will. Florence lashed low-lying barrier islands that experience some of the fastest rates of sea level rise observed anywhere in the world, almost an inch (2.5 centimeters) a year. It has since been downgraded to a tropical storm, but is not going anywhere fast.

Spanish moss waved in the trees as the winds picked up in Wilmington, and floating docks bounced atop swells at Morehead City. Ocean water flowed between homes and on to streets on the Outer Banks; waves crashed against wooden fishing piers.

As of noon, Swansboro, North Carolina, had almost 31 inches of rain, Emerald Isle had over 23, and Wilmington and Goldsboro had about a foot.

Some towns have endured more than two feet of rain and forecasters say that more than three feet of water could bring major flooding further inland in the coming days.

Once a Category 4 hurricane with winds of 140 miles per hour (225 kph), the hurricane was downgraded to a Category 1 on Thursday night.

Donald Trump has issued a disaster declaration for North Carolina as Tropical Storm Florence continues to dump an "epic" amount of rainfall on the U.S. state.

Tom Watson watched floodwaters creep toward his home on the south edge of Burgaw, where he rode out the storm with his wife and adult daughter, who fled from Wilmington to be with them as Florence approached.

"We'll operate without power; we have candles". Along with other home cleanup and fix work ministries, Frazier said his group works to "basically restore somebody back to where they were as much as we can".

Others were at home hoping for the best. "We have two boats and all our worldly possessions", said Susan Patchkofsky, who refused her family's pleas to evacuate and stayed at Emerald Isle with her husband. "We have a safe basement and generator that comes on automatically".

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