Hurricane Florence makes landfall in North Carolina

Boarded up storefronts preparing for Hurricane Florence

Boarded up storefronts preparing for Hurricane Florence

Debt payments towards things like credit cards and student loans also remained well below the baseline after dropping in the weeks leading up to the hurricanes, suggesting that people may have needed to cut corners on their typical expenditures in order to cover the costs of home and auto fix.

Police in Wilmington, North Carolina, near where the hurricane made landfall, said a mother and her infant were killed when a tree fell on their house. A 77-year-old man was electrocuted when he connected extension cords to a generator in the rain.

According to Tom Collins, director of Pender County Emergency Management, a woman called 911 about a medical emergency at her home in Hampstead Friday morning. It was crawling west at 5 miles per hour (7 kph).

As 400-mile-wide Florence pounded away at the coast with torrential downpours and surging seas, rescue crews used boats to reach scores of people besieged by rising waters along a river.

The enormous storm crept at a 6 miles per hour pace, making it clear that the trouble was just beginning. The homes of about 10 million were under watches or warnings for the hurricane or tropical storm conditions. "We are stuck in the attic".

At 2 a.m. Friday, the city tweeted an ominous message, saying at least 150 people were awaiting rescue.

The river swamped the town after Hurricane Matthew came through two years ago: One church parishioner drowned during that storm, more than 700 families were displaced from their homes, and two of the city's largest public housing projects were destroyed, Foreman said. She plans to continue to ride out the storm. By late afternoon, Beaufort County Manager Brian Alligood hoped the worst was over. "We have started to see the water recede".

The parts of the country still in the storm's path have been saturated by summer rains and can not soak up any surplus from Florence.

The NHC said hurricane-force winds extended outward 80 miles from the center of the storm and tropical storm-force winds extended almost 195 miles out.

Florence remains a Category 1 storm, and it's spinning hurricane-force winds up to 35 miles from its center.

Before sunrise, high winds and storm surge from Hurricane Florence hits Swansboro N.C., on September 14, 2018.

Gov. Cooper said Friday, "As soon as it is safe, first responders will make sure they go and rescue people who need to be saved from this storm".

He noted even rainfall in North Carolina could rebound to SC in the form of swollen rivers downstream.

There were no immediate reports of injuries or fatalities, though most of the city was without power and thousands of buildings had been damaged, said Roberts on Friday.

The biggest danger, as forecasters saw it, was not the wind but the water: the storm surge along the coastline and the prospect of 300 to 1000mm of rain over the next several days that could trigger catastrophic flooding in a slow-motion disaster well inland. Around 3:30 p.m. Thursday, the electricity went out.

When Florence started battering eastern North Carolina with record rainfall, the Neuse and Trent rivers began to swell - and combined with high tide, made for unsafe flooding.

Interestingly, these outflows were still lagging 12 weeks later, when most shops had reopened and locals had returned to work. But once New Bern TV news station WCTI evacuated its newsroom Thursday night because of flooding and people began to lose power, the seriousness of the situation began dawning on folks, she said. "I stayed here. I'd been through so many hurricanes", said Balance, who added that six sheriff's officers came to his house to rescue him Friday morning, but he didn't need to leave since the tides and river were receding. Flooding also hit the Bogue Sound near Beaufort, the Pungo River at Belhaven and the Pamlico River at Washington. He said parts of North Carolina had seen storm surges - the bulge of seawater pushed ashore by the hurricane - as high as 10 feet.

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