Florence aftermath: Rivers are rising in the Carolinas, cresting at record levels

Geraldine Edwards
September 19, 2018

The death toll from Florence, which came ashore in North Carolina on Friday, rose to 31 on Monday.

Florence weakened to a tropical depression, but flooding worries continue from the Carolinas to Virginia.

Flooding has caused several other deaths, including that of a man who drowned attempting to cross a road in Marlboro County, SC, on Monday. Wilmington, North Carolina, a city with a population of 110,000 people and an worldwide airport, has been cut off from the rest of the world by flood waters.

President Donald Trump says the aftermath of last year's hurricanes in Puerto Rico have been an "incredible, tough situation" but adds, "we fought, and we are winning that one big".

Florence, which came ashore as a hurricane on Thursday before weakening to a tropical depression by Sunday, is expected to weaken again today before re-intensifying on Tuesday and Wednesday, the US National Hurricane Center said.

Florence death toll rises to 25 as flooding continues
Florence aftermath: Rivers are rising in the Carolinas, cresting at record levels

At least 17 people have been killed. Officials warned residents to avoid driving around barricades. SC also set a record for most rain in a single tropical weather system, previously set by Tropical Storm Jerry in 1995.

A nine-mile northbound stretch of Interstate 95 in SC, just south of the North Carolina line, remained closed Monday due to flooding from Hurricane Florence.

"This is an epic storm that is still continuing", Cooper said.

Gov Cooper said he has been in touch with Department of Homeland Security (DHS) Secretary Kirstjen Nielsen, who visited North Carolina on Monday.

Some Carolinians were relieved that the storm was pushing out, despite the continued threat of flooding from rivers.

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The dead included a one-year-old boy, who was swept away from his mother as they tried to escape their vehicle amid floodwaters.

Wilmington was also the site of the first deaths of the hurricane.

The statement from WWAY said the stations have been working with local, state and federal officials to determine how to access the transmitter site by ground or air to provide information to the area during recovery from the storm.

About 70 miles away from the coast, residents near the Lumber River stepped from their homes directly into boats floating in their front yards; river forecasts showed the scene could be repeated in towns as far as 250 miles inland as waters rise for days. In the port city of Wilmington, residents awoke to the sound of power transformers blowing up, plunging homes into darkness as Hurricane Florence's howling winds whipped through the streets sending metal signs, water and debris flying.

McMaster says officials in this area have told him local water sources in this area are almost 10 inches (25 centimeters) higher than normal.

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Henry McMaster, R, urged patience, emphasizing that his state has never seen "a hurricane staying on top of us for this long". Flooding also hit the Bogue Sound near Beaufort, the Pungo River at Belhaven and the Pamlico River at Washington .

A cross is seen in flood water at a cemetary in Grifton, North Carolina on September 16, 2018. About 1.8 million customers were affected by the storm.

Elsewhere in North Carolina, an 88-year-old man died after his auto was swept away.

Large segments of the major corridor also were closed in North Carolina, making north-south travel subject to long detours.

"I lost everything in the flooding", he said.

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Georgia, where governor Nathan Deal has now declared an emergency, is also thought to be in the firing line. The Weather Channel reported that about 300,000 have lost power so far.

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