Rivers keep rising in Carolinas as Trump tours Florence 'nightmare' aftermath

James Marshall
September 20, 2018

The North Carolina Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services told the paper that many farms prepared for the storm by moving animals to higher ground, but underestimated the strength of Hurricane Florence's storm surge and flood waters.

It was the same message at Trump's first stop in North Carolina, where Gov. Roy Cooper and federal and state officials briefed the president at a Marine Corps air station in Havelock, which sits among areas Florence hit hardest. "There will be nothing left undone", he said.

Traveling with him were the four US senators from North and South Carolina, Office of Management and Budget Director and former South Carolina Rep. Mick Mulvaney, and Homeland Security Secretary Kirstjen Nielsen.

Hurricane Florence, which came ashore last Friday with torrential rains, has caused more outdoor hog manure pits to collapse and overflow in North Carolina than Hurricane Matthew did in 2016, according to state data, stoking concern about possible water contamination.

President Trump traveled to North Carolina to assess the damage.

Of those, approximately 7,800 are in shelters in North Carolina. "We're going to take care of everybody".

Goldsboro was also still flooded.

"Our rivers are still cresting, and there is still danger for some people", he said.

To recover, Cooper said the state will need help.

"There is a strong potential that those who live within the 1-mile evacuation area of the Cape Fear River will be impacted by flooding", the city said in a statement.

The city manager told CNN that 12,000 people were "in harm's way".

Florence has killed at least 35 people - 26 deaths happened in North Carolina, while another eight happened in SC.

Officials have identified the two mental health patients who drowned when a van they were riding in was swept away in SC flood waters.

Thousands of homes are still underwater in the Carolinas and thousands of families have had to be rescued from the floods.

More than 121,000 customers were without power across North Carolina, and more than 2.1 million customers across the southeast United States were affected by the storm, according to utilities.

With Wilmington still mostly an island surrounded by Hurricane Florence's floodwaters and residents waiting in hours-long lines for supplies, North Carolina's governor is pleading with thousands of evacuees to be patient and not return home just yet.

Hewett said the Cape Fear River could crest to its highest historic level - about 62 feet - by Wednesday.

When Air Force One landed Wednesday morning in eastern North Carolina, the only visible sign of the damage wrought by Hurricane Florence nearly a week ago was a pile of twisted steel, the remains of a temporary hangar.

Addressing a crowd of Texans after Hurricane Harvey in August 2017, Trump marveled at the size of his audience: "What a turnout", he said then.

Officials previously had estimated that about 1.7 million chickens had drowned and that the number of potential hog deaths was unknown.

Other reports by Click Lancashire

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