5 dead in Hurricane Florence, including mom and infant

Rodiano Bonacci
Settembre 16, 2018

About150 people were awaiting rescue in New Bern, N.C. early Friday morning, and multiple news outlets report some 60 people had to be evacuated from a motel in Jacksonville, N.C. overnight after it sustained structural damage as the Category 1 hurricane made landfall.

Rescue workers in North Carolina meanwhile were scrambling to save people stranded in their homes.

Over 770,000 were without power in North Carolina Friday night. Investigators said the fire started as a result by a candle that was being used during a power outage.

The hurricane has moved at only 3-6 miles per hour on Friday, increasing the effect of its torrential rains.

Earlier Friday, the Wilmington Police said they were responding to this incident.

Hurricane-force winds extend outward up to 70 miles (110 km) from the center and tropical-storm-force winds extend outward up to 195 miles (315 km).

Storm surge could be as high as 11 feet in parts of North Carolina, prompting officials to closely watch the rise of rivers in the eastern part of the state. Significant weakening is expected over the weekend.

Record water levels occurred at Wrightsville Beach, said NOAA's Ocean Service, which reported the ocean "reached reached 4.11 ft above high tide, breaking a record set by Hurricane Joaquin in 2015 by more than a foot".

Video footage showed parking lots in the riverfront town of New Bern turn into shallow lakes of dirty gray water as heavy rain fell.

The No. 1 mission right now, Cooper said, is to save lives.

Once winds drop to 73 miles per hour, Florence will become a tropical storm.

Saturday night, state and county officials confirmed more deaths, including three people in Duplin County, who died in floodwaters.

Officials have warned people against entering attics, so as to avoid drowning, unless they have a means to cut through to the roof.

Forecasters warned that drenching rains of anywhere from 1 to 3½ feet as the storm crawls westward across North and SC could trigger epic flooding well inland over the next few days.

The port city of Wilmington woke Friday to the sound of exploding electrical transformers with strong gusts throwing street signs and other debris as well as water in all directions, according to an AFP reporter at the scene. "Our meteorologists are saying that the rainfall amounts will be devastating in certain areas", he said Thursday.

Whether residents left their homes, sought refuge in a shelter or are hunkering down, the weather service has bad news: After creeping inland, Florence "is expected to slow down even more today and tonight".

Florence is one of four named storms in the Atlantic. The crash happened just after 9:30 p.m. and Lee was reportedly wearing a seatbelt and the only one in the vehicle, according to Capt. Kelley Hughes with South Carolina Highway Patrol.

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