Five dead from Hurricane Florence, including mother and baby, say officials
15 Septembre, 2018, 02:32 | Auteur: Therese Cote
The biggest danger, as forecasters saw it, was not the wind but the water: the storm surge along the coastline and the prospect of 300 to 1000mm of rain over the next several days that could trigger catastrophic flooding in a slow-motion disaster well inland.
Florence is one of four named storms in the Atlantic.
More than 440,000 homes and businesses were without power in North and SC early on Friday, utility officials said.
A mother and baby were killed when a tree fell on a house, according to a tweet from Wilmington police.
North Carolina corrections officials said more than 3000 people were relocated from adult prisons and juvenile centres in the path of Florence, and more than 300 county prisoners were transferred to state facilities.
HurricaneFlorence is inflicting its long, agonizing assault on the North Carolina coast, with winds whipping at 90 miles per hour and life-threatening storm surge pushing ashore as the lumbering storm's eyewall begins to reach the coast.
"WE ARE COMING TO GET YOU", New Bern city officials said on Twitter.
Downed trees, branches on the hurricane-lashed streets of Wilmington, North Carolina.
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The eye of the storm and its outer edges pushed a life-threatening storm surge of floodwater miles inland and ripped apart buildings with screaming wind and pelting rain.
On the mainland in New Bern, authorities said more than 100 people had to be saved from floods and that the downtown area was underwater.
At least four people, including a mother and her baby, were confirmed dead on Friday night as Hurricane Florence brought a "biblical" deluge to the United States east coast.
According to CNN, the hurricane hit the east coast of the USA with 90-mph winds and relentless rain. But that, combined with the storm's slowing forward movement and heavy rains, had Gov. Roy Cooper warning of an impending disaster.
Florence's eyewall reached shore near Wilmington, N.C., just before 6 a.m. ET Friday; more than an hour later, the National Hurricane Center announced, it had "finally" made landfall near Wrightsville Beach.
Winds bent trees towards the ground and raindrops flew sideways as Florence moved in for an extended stay, with enough of its killer winds swirling overseas to maintain its power.
Forecasters said Florence's surge could cover all but a sliver of the Carolina coast under as much as 11 feet (3.4 meters) of ocean water, and days of downpours could unload more than 3 feet (0.9 meters) of rain, touching off severe flooding.
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An estimated million people have fled parts of North Carolina , South Carolina and Virginia in fear of the hurricane's impacts. But the real story of the storm is the deluge its already created, and will continue to add to in the coming days.
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Florence had been a Category 3 hurricane with 120 miles per hour winds on Thursday but dropped to Category 1 before coming ashore. After landfall, Florence slowed to a pace that meant it would plague the area with days of flooding.
At least 280,000 people are already without power as the outskirts of the storm lashed North and SC , and Virginia. The storm's intensity diminished as it neared land, with winds dropping to about 90 miles per hour by nightfall.
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When all is said and done, Florence could pour 40 inches of rain along some parts of the North Carolina coast, according to CNN. Florence's winds have dropped from a peak of 140mph to 105mph, reducing the hurricane from a Category 4 to a Category 2.
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