Hurricane Florence makes landfall in US North Carolina coast

Hurricane Florence makes landfall in US North Carolina coast

Flash flood watches will likely remain in place for the Triangle "all the way through Sunday", Schwenneker said, and "life-threatening flash flooding is likely", the NWS said.

Forecasters say the center of Hurricane Florence is hovering just inland near Cape Fear, North Carolina.

North Carolina's governor, Roy Cooper, said Florence was set to cover nearly all of the state in several feet of water.

Energy Secretary Rick Perry says the US electricity sector has been well prepared for Hurricane Florence even as hundreds of thousands of homes lose power in the storm. "People think we're taking animals that have been stranded from the storm".

By Friday evening, Florence was downgraded to a tropical storm, its winds weakening to 70 miles per hour as it pushed inland.

The zoo will continue to monitor the storm hour by hour, Kottyan said.

"Some of the rainfall totals we're getting are already adding up to about 14 inches", NHC Director Ken Graham said shortly after 11 a.m. ET.

Schools and businesses closed as far south as Georgia, airlines cancelled more than 1,500 flights, and coastal towns in the Carolinas were largely emptied out.

The southern areas of central North Carolina could see more than 20 inches of rain.

Along the coast, floodwaters have been hitting inland towns near rivers that normally discharge into the ocean.

The impact of Florence will be widespread, with destructive winds, life-threatening storm surge, risky surf, torrential rainfall, flooding and the potential for tornadoes.

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A man runs past a mandatory evacuation sign before Hurricane Florence comes ashore in Wrightsville Beach, North Carolina, on Wednesday.

New Bern, which sits along the Neuse River, has seen massive flooding and damage from the storm, and now civil authorities are urging people to get to high points in their homes to await rescue efforts.

More than 722,000 homes and businesses were without power in North and SC early on Friday, utility officials said.

Still, some residents ignored calls to evacuate. The department also encourages pet owners to make sure their animals are up to date on vaccinations and wearing identifying tags; bring a three-day supply of food, water, medicine and toys for pets; and have photos on hand in case pets get lost.

There's still a threat from rising tides, Risty-Davis says.

About 9,700 National Guard troops and civilians have been deployed, with high-water vehicles, helicopters and boats.

The National Weather Service has issued a coastal flood warning for the Peninsula, including Williamsburg, James City County and York County, as Hurricane Florence nears landfall in the Carolinas.

Hurricane Florence crashed into the Carolinas on Friday, knocking down trees, swamping streets and causing four deaths before slowing to a pace that will lead to a days-long deluge for the region. It is expected that the hurricane moves on or near the coastline during the night of Thursday through Friday.

More than 60 people had to be pulled from a collapsing motel at the height of the storm, and many more who defied evacuation orders held out hope of being rescued. Wilmington is expected to get battered before the storm drifts south. Move to safety if your home is at risk.

By 2 p.m. Saturday, the storm won't even be halfway across SC, forecasters say.

Before sunrise, high winds and storm surge from Hurricane Florence hits Swansboro N.C., on September 14, 2018. Its designation then was "potential tropical cyclone six". That advisory came out on August 30, when Florence was developing near the Cabo Verde Islands across the Atlantic.

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