Florence disaster declared in North Carolina as flooding threat grows

Hurricane turns deadly floods Carolinas

Two deadly storms - Hurricane "Florence" and Typhoon "Mangkhut" - roared ashore on the same day, half a world apart, but the way they spread devastation was as different as water and wind.

And to look at Florence specifically, "it's very likely that climate change has warmed the ocean such that the hurricane's intense rainfall is more destructive than without global warming", said Weather Underground Meteorology Director Jeff Masters, a former hurricane hunter.

Rivers and creeks rose toward record levels, threatening flash flooding that could devastate communities and endanger dams, roads and bridges. Paramedics trying to reach her were blocked by debris.

Relief will not come quickly.

The Wilmington airport had a wind gust clocked at 105 miles per hour (169 kph), the highest since Hurricane Helene in 1958.

The center said the storm would dump as much as 40 inches (102 cm) of rain along coastal areas of the Carolinas, as well as up to 10 inches in southwestern Virginia.

There is really nowhere for the water to go.

U.S. 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".

The video had been viewed more than 3.6 million times and had received nearly 60,000 retweets as of Friday evening.

Still, he said: "I feel like the dumbest human being who ever walked the face of the earth". "You may need to move up to the second story, or to your attic, but WE ARE COMING TO GET YOU".

"Residents should not let their guard down", North Carolina Emergency Management tweeted.

Global warming didn't cause Florence, they say.

Across the Trent River from New Bern, Jerry and Jan Andrews returned home after evacuating to find carp flopping in their backyard near the porch stairs.

Rescue workers rush a man to an ambulance after a giant tree fell on a house in Wilmington, N.C.as Hurricane Florence came ashore, September 14, 2018.

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Residents reached out for help through the night by phone and on social media.

Wilmington Police confirmed that a mother and her infant died when a tree fell on their home. A 78-year-old man was electrocuted attempting to connect extension cords while another man perished when he was blown down by high winds while checking on his hunting dogs, a county spokesman said.

Elsewhere in North Carolina, a man was knocked to the ground while outside and died.

Authorities in SC reported one death, saying a woman was killed when her vehicle struck a fallen tree. "Don't drive across standing or moving water", the governor said, urging people to heed evacuation orders.

Interested in Hurricane Florence?

"Be extremely careful and stay alert".

That's just the number of customers without power in the Carolinas. Duke Energy said late Friday that it anticipates 1 million to 3 million outages in the Carolinas, and that full power restoration could take weeks.

But even before the storm made landfall as a Category 1 hurricane on Friday, experts were warning that low-income neighborhoods were already poised to bear the brunt of its ruination.

But on the east coast, the trends are more clear: stronger hurricanes are happening more often, and farther north. But Florence has been a odd one since it materialized in the distant Atlantic and took an unusual path toward the mainland United States.

As for the landslides, Gov. Henry McMaster did warn about possible landslides in the state, but he was referring to northwestern portions of the state, not the Grand Strand.

The coast has been battered, and the mountains appear to be next. With Florence, it'll be the same amount of rainfall in three days. That means its torrential rains will be felt harder.

And dolphins were spotted closer than usual to shore near in Wilmington, North Carolina. Not far away, Jackie and Quinton Washington watched water filling both their front and back yards near the river.

Rankin reported from Richmond, Virginia, and Waggoner from Raleigh, North Carolina.

An Associated Press photographer who flew over the Outer Banks in a helicopter Saturday to survey damage observed some houses on stilts that were washed out below but still standing.

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