Florence makes landfall near Wilmington; how often does that happen?

Clark Diaz
September 17, 2018

Officials also have confirmed the hurricane's first known fatalities.

A mother and baby were killed when a tree fell on their home in Wilmington, North Carolina. The child's father was transported to the hospital with injuries. A 78-year-old man was electrocuted at his home while attempting to connect two extension cords outside in the rain, Dail said.

At 11:00 am (1500 GMT), the storm was packing maximum sustained winds of 80 miles per hour (130 kilometers per hour) and moving west-southwest at three mph (six kph).

According to the U.S. National Weather Service, there are 5.25 million residents in areas under hurricane warnings or watches, and 4.9 million in places under tropical storm warnings or watches. "We are stuck in the attic". In Pender County, a woman died of a heart attack; paramedics trying to reach her were blocked by debris.

Hurricane Florence is dumping rain on North Carolina and pushing a storm surge taller than most humans onto communities near the coast. By late afternoon, Beaufort County Manager Brian Alligood hoped the worst was over.

South Carolina Gov. Henry McMaster, R, urged patience, emphasizing that his state has never seen "a hurricane staying on top of us for this long".

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A 40-foot yacht lies today in the yard of a storm-damaged home on East Front Street in New Bern, N.C. "We'll get through this. One of the authorities leading the response to Florence says the storm is causing "historic and unprecedented flooding".

The National Hurricane Center said Florence was forecast to keep moving farther inland across the Carolinas through the weekend before turning toward the central Appalachian Mountains early next week.

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. Tropical storm-force winds extend outward up to 170 miles, the hurricane center said.

And Hurricane Florence, though far from the fastest-windspeed storm in recent memory, remains a significant threat precisely due to the large surge and huge rainfall it's dumping on affected areas.

Although the hurricane has been reduced to category 1, its stall and massive size pose a threat of long durations of rain and wind.

Onslow County spokesman Cornelius Jordan said some visitors at the Triangle Motor Inn were able to drive away on their own, but emergency personnel had to take others to a safe location. Hundreds more were rescued elsewhere from rising water.

The flooding soon spread into SC, swamping places like North Myrtle Beach, in a resort area known for its white sands and multitude of golf courses.

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Most ominously, forecasters said the terrifying onslaught would last for hours and hours, because Florence was barely creeping along and still drawing energy from the ocean.

Forecasters say the biggest danger is the water as the storm surge along the coastline and the prospect of one to three-and-a-half feet of rain over the coming days could trigger catastrophic flooding inland.

But while the president urged people in the region to follow instructions to evacuate, he obscured that message Thursday, when he tweeted that he didn't believe a study that determined almost 3,000 people died after hurricanes Maria and Irma swept across Puerto Rico a year ago.

More than a dozen other federal agencies are involved in the preparation efforts, underscoring what's at stake for the region's residents and the Trump administration. "It's an uninvited brute who doesn't want to leave". Flooding also hit the Bogue Sound near Beaufort, the Pungo River at Belhaven and the Pamlico River at Washington.

The North Carolina State Highway Patrol says that as the hurricane hit the coast overnight, officers "responded to 108 calls for service and 30 collisions". "For overall damage, it would be hard, at the end of the day, I think, to find a rival for this storm".

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