The water kept rising: New Bern overwhelmed by flooding

Cesar Mills
September 17, 2018

Weather forecasters warn of the risk of life-threatening flash flooding in parts of North and SC, and Virginia, from storm Florence, reports BBC.

By midday, Florence had already claimed its first lives, when a tree crashed onto a home in Wilmington, North Carolina, killing a mother and her infant daughter. At that time, Florence was a Category 1 storm but has since been downgraded to a tropical storm.

Forecasters warned that drenching rains of 1 to 3½ feet (30 centimeters to 1 meter) as the hurricane-turned-tropical storm crawls westward across North and SC could trigger epic flooding well inland over the next few days.

North Carolina Governor Roy Cooper had said that "several more days of rain" were expected, describing the amount of rainfall from the hurricane as a "1,000-year event".

Cooper went on to say, "It's getting worse".

"You can walk faster than this storm is moving", said Wilmington Mayor Bill Saffo. SC recorded its first death from the storm, with officials saying a 61-year-old woman was killed when her auto hit a tree that had fallen across a highway. The conditions and identity of the two transported to the hospital were not immediately available. A man electrocuted while plugging in a generator during a heavy rain and another knocked down by wind were among the other casualties reported from the monster storm lashing the Southeast. "In addition to the ongoing, unsafe storm surge and flash flooding, will be a long-term river flood threat WELL INLAND as very heavy rainfall continues to fall in the coming days".

But more than 140 people are still waiting to be helped.

Roberts, the city spokeswoman, said preliminary estimates show about 4,300 residences and 300 commercial buildings had been damaged.

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"Great job FEMA, First Responders and Law Enforcement - not easy, very unsafe, tremendous talent". While it had weakened significantly since peaking as a Category 5 storm in the Atlantic, the heavy rain bands and slow movement have caused catastrophic flooding and storm surge along the coast.

"If the river rises to the level they say it's going to, then this warehouse is going to be under water", he said. "We are deeply concerned about the inland flooding".

"You may need to move up to the second story, or to your attic, but WE ARE COMING TO GET YOU", the authorities in New Bern said on Twitter. Emergency crews also rescued an Onslow family from their home where a tree fell through the roof, Jordan said.

Officials are also delivering food, water and rescue vehicles to hard-hit areas.

There have already been 360 rescues in New Bern, North Carolina since Hurricane Florence made landfall on Friday morning.

Volunteers from the Civilian Crisis Response Team help people to higher ground after rescuing them from their flooded homes during Hurricane Florence September 14, 2018 in James City, North Carolina.

In Union, South Carolina, an elderly woman died Friday night after striking a fallen tree while driving.

In Wilmington, numerous trees that contributed to its historic beauty are now gone. "We're going to have to have patience, we're going to have to be careful and we're going to have to deal with a lot of water".

Other reports by GizPress

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