Confirmed Dead Due to Hurricane Florence

17 September, 2018, 00:30 | Author: Jacqueline Daniels
  • Russ Lewis covers his eyes from a gust of wind and a blast of sand as Hurricane Florence approaches Myrtle Beach South Carolina early Friday

WILMINGTON, North Carolina: Hurricane Florence made landfall in North Carolina early Friday local time, pushing a life-threatening storm surge of floodwater several kilometres inland and ripping apart buildings with screaming wind and pelting rain.

"What we're seeing. of course we have floods, storm surge, wind", Parker says.

The centre of the eye of the hurricane made landfall in Wrightsville Beach, North Carolina, and was moving slowly westward just south of Wilmington. "Plant procedures call for the reactors to be shut down before the anticipated onset of hurricane-force winds", agency spokesman Joey Ledford told CNN.

- A husband and wife died in a Fayetteville, North Carolina house fire on Friday, the state's Office of the Chief Medical Examiner says.

Videos on social media show the water reaching the windows of some houses in the Belhaven area.

The storm was downgraded to a category one Thursday evening, but is still packing winds of at least 85 miles per hour. The storm is expected to lumber into far southeastern North Carolina and eastern SC through Saturday, punishing the area with rain and damaging winds. North Carolina Gov. Roy Cooper said during a press briefing Friday morning that the storm is expected to last another 24-36 hours. "Catastrophic effects will be felt".

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Tropical storm-force winds extend outward up to 175 miles from its center.

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

"It's going to be a changing event, it's going to change to an inland flood event", warned FEMA Administrator Brock Long.

In the besieged city of New Bern, rescuers had plucked more than 200 people from rising waters by midmorning Friday, but about 150 more had to wait as conditions worsened and a storm surge reached 10 feet, officials said.

Myrtle Beach, a SC beach resort, was deserted with empty streets, boarded up storefronts and very little traffic.

The North Carolina State Emergency Response Team released a statement Saturday night indicating a, 81-year-old man died in Wayne County after falling and hitting his head as he packed to evacuate on Friday.

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Duke Energy Corp, the biggest utility in the area with over 4 million customers, estimated the storm could cause between 1 million and 3 million outages.

Not everybody was heeding orders to evacuate, however.

The NHC said the threat of tornadoes was increasing as Florence neared shore and South Carolina Governor Henry McMaster said the heavy rain could trigger landslides in the west of his state.

"I about jumped out of my skin", he said in a phone interview Friday morning.

Perched on the porch of his home, carpenter Tony Albright was calmly awaiting Florence's arrival, beer in hand. "I don't know what the status of it is".

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