At least 4 dead as slow moving Florence terrorizes Carolinas

Gov. McMaster cautions SC residents as Hurricane Florence moves toward state

Gov. McMaster cautions SC residents as Hurricane Florence moves toward state

Dozens more were pulled from a collapsed hotel. Hundreds more were rescued elsewhere from rising water. Others could only wait and hope someone would come for them.

In New Bern, along the coast, homes were completely surrounded by water, and rescuers used inflatable boats to reach people.

"Sooner or later we need to get out of there", Orrin H. Pilkey, a professor emeritus of geology at Duke University, told The Associated Press before the storm hit. Almost 900,000 homes and businesses were without power in the Carolinas early on Friday, utility officials said.

A piece of corrugated metal blown by winds from Hurricane Florence just misses a state patrolman as people move a wood and metal structure that was blown onto the roadway, in Florence, South Carolina, on September 14, 2018. The southeast town of Newport, N.C., reported a rainfall total of nearly 24 inches as of midnight Saturday.

We're seeing photos of devastating flooding and wind damage from Hurricane Florence in the eastern part of North Carolina. "It's an uninvited brute who doesn't want to leave".

At 5 p.m. EDT (2100 GMT), the National Hurricane Center said Florence had maximum sustained winds near 45 miles per hour.

In an update published at 5:33 a.m. ET on Saturday, the agency said that the storm is now striking SC and has a path through the in-land charted for the next few days.

By 5 a.m., about 200 people had been rescued from flooded homes in New Bern, where the National Weather Service reported 10 feet of inundation.

Authorities warned, too, of the threat of mudslides and the risk of environmental havoc from floodwaters washing over industrial waste sites and hog farms.

Florence's death toll could rise as a number of deaths are being investigated to see if they were caused by the storm. "Don't drive across standing or moving water", the governor said, urging people to heed evacuation orders.

North Carolina alone is forecast to get 9.6 trillion gallons (36 trillion litres), enough to cover the Tar Heel state to a depth of about 10 inches (25 centimetres).

Eduardo Munoz / Reuters A downed tree rests on a house during the passing of Hurricane Florence in the town of Wilson, North Carolina. The few cars out on a main street in Wilmington had to swerve to avoid fallen trees, metal debris and power lines.

Airlines canceled more than 2,100 flights through Sunday.

The city of about 29,000, which was founded in the early 1700s, is near the North Carolina coast and is bordered on the east and south, respectively, by two rivers.

"Life-threatening, catastrophic flash floods and prolonged significant river flooding are likely over portions of the Carolinas and the southern to central Appalachians from western North Carolina into west-central Virginia through early next week, as Florence moves slowly inland", the NHC statement read.

In Lumberton, North Carolina, volunteers are working to try to prevent a repeat of what happened with 2016's Hurricane Matthew, which left the city underwater for days. There is a blustery wind blowing grass down, and it appears to be coming from behind him.

Glover speculated that part of the problem could stem from an "until I can get to higher ground and make sure my family is safe, I can't talk to media", mindset.

A mother and her infant are dead after a tree fell on their house in Wilmington.

United States correspondent Cordelia Lynch, who is in New Bern, said: "This community in the weeks and months to come is up against a great deal of flooding".

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