Hurricane Florence brings flooding and blackouts

James Marshall
September 15, 2018

Early on Friday, South Carolina emergency officials said there was still time, "but not a lot of time" for people to leave flood-prone areas. "We have also gotten calls from family members anxious about relatives they can't reach". We have steps on the sides of the house so it's a few feet off the ground anyway.

"I feel like the dumbest human being who ever walked the face of the earth", said Ballance, owner of a seafood restaurant that was flooded.

A hurricane watch is in effect for Edisto Beach South Carolina to South Santee River South Carolina. Authorities have advised people, however, to move to higher levels in their homes while they wait to be rescued.

Hurricane Florence has killed at least three people after it crashed on North Carolina's coast on Friday. On the morning of September 14, the National Hurricane Centre warned that "catastrophic" flooding and "life-threatening" storm surges were expected to spread inland.

Forecasters expect Florence to hit the Carolinas early in the morning on September 14.

The storm's movement, not its strength, has forecasters and officials anxious.

By 11 a.m. (1500 GMT) the winds had dropped to 80 mph and the center was about 5 miles (3.1 km) inland, 20 miles (30 km) southwest of Wilmington, and moving west at a sluggish 3 mph (5 kph). It is expected to move across parts of southeastern North Carolina and eastern SC on Friday and Saturday, then head north over the western Carolinas and central Appalachian Mountains early next week, the NHC said.

Will Epperson, a 36-year-old golf course assistant superintendent, said he and his wife had planned to ride out the storm at their home in Hampstead, North Carolina, but then reconsidered.

The National Hurricane Center said a gauge north of Wilmington in Emerald Isle, North Carolina, reported 1.92 metres of inundation.

Rescue helicopters and trucks that can navigate floodwaters are also standing by.

North Carolina Governor Roy Cooper warned people: "Today the threat becomes a reality".

Roughly 1 million people are under evacuation orders.

One resident, 67-year-old Linda Smith, told the MailOnline: "We're a little anxious about the storm surge so we came down to see what the river is doing now".

The police chief of Wrightsville Beach suggested that those who chose to stay give him their next-of-kin contact information.

"This is a life-threatening situation". On Friday, he applauded the efforts of emergency responders.

FEMA's first priority after Florence passes will be getting infrastructure that's critical to communities' well-being up and running, Long said. "Thank you!", Trump wrote on Twitter.

Other reports by Click Lancashire

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