Trump to visit North Carolina as waterways rise after Florence

A flooded farm stands next to the Lumber River on Monday in this aerial

The White House said President Donald Trump would visit North Carolina on Wednesday.

Still stranded by Florence's floods, Wilmington, North Carolina, residents are lining up by the hundreds for free food, water and tarps as officials try to open new routes to one of the state's largest cities.

More than 15,000 people remain in shelters and more than 200,000 customers are without power across North Carolina, six days after Florence made landfall as a Category 1 hurricane, according to state officials. Fire and rescue crews were waiting to go into many areas to assist with structural damage resulting from Florence, which has dumped up to 36 inches of rain in parts of North Carolina since Thursday. "I know many people are exhausted of the present and are scared of the future", Gov. Roy Cooper said.

Roads remain treacherous, he said, and some are still being closed for the first time as rivers swelled by torrential rains inland drain toward the Atlantic.

Rivers are continuing to rise as massive rainful across the state makes its way downstream, and major roads like Interstate 40 have turned into rivers, not to mention entire towns.

Hurricane Florence made landfall on Friday, but it's 90 miles per hour winds and 20-plus inches of rain have left damage and flooding throughout portions of eastern and central North Carolina. "Whatever you need from Washington, we are there", Trump told state and local officials at a briefing.

North Carolina's governor, Roy Cooper, warned that floodwaters would linger for days, and urged residents in the path of the hurricane who had evacuated not to return yet.

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Property damage from the storm is expected to come to $17 billion to $22 billion, the risk management firm Moody's Analytics said.

The city manager told CNN that 12,000 people are "in harm's way". Power failures in the Southeast also were down, from a high of more than 910,000 to about 310,000, almost all in North Carolina.

Also scheduled to attend Tuesday's briefing are the chief of the National Guard Bureau and the adjutant general of SC.

There have been 32 reported deaths related to the storm.

Photos from the site provided to AP by Cape Fear River Watch, an environmental advocacy group, show cascades of gray-colored water spilling from at least two breaches at the landfill and flowing toward Sutton Lake, the plant's former cooling pond which is now used for public recreation, including fishing and boating.

At least one of Duke Energy's coal ash landfills was damaged by Florence, causing at least 2,000 cubic yards of coal ash to flow out of its site near Wilmington.

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