5 feared dead, ‘ catastrophic flooding’ as hurricane Florence ravages Carolinas
■ Storm weakens, but 5 feared dead in torrential rains ■ Gov calls it ‘ one in 1,000- yr event’
Wilmington, Sept. 15: Tropical storm Florence caused “catastrophic” flooding in the Carolinas on Saturday even as it began to weaken, after resulting in multiple deaths, including a woman and her baby killed when a tree fell on their house.
Four deaths were confirmed by officials as American media reported another, and the storm has wreaked havoc in the Carolinas, lashing the US states with torrential rain and causing rivers to burst their banks.
“Florence slowly weakening just inland over eastern South Carolina but causing catastrophic flooding over North and South Carolina,” the National Hurricane Centre ( NHC) said early on Saturday morning, after downgrading it from a hurricane to a tropical storm the previous day.
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.” “Into next week our rivers are going to continue to rise and there will be more significant flooding,” Cooper said.
There had been three confirmed deaths from the storm and several others were being investigated to determine if they were storm- related, he said. The mother and her baby were killed in New Hanover County when a tree fell on their house, the governor said, while confirming another death in Lenoir County.
Authorities reported a death in Pender County when downed trees prevented emergency units from reaching a woman with a medical condition who suffered a heart attack. US media later said a second man in
Lenoir County died after heavy winds knocked him down as he tried to check on his dogs. “This storm
is going to continue its violent grind across our state for days,” Cooper said. Over 760,000 customers in North Carolina were without power and 21,000 people were housed in 157 shelters.
Neighborhoods are flooded after the storm surge from Hurricane Florence flooded the Neuse River on Friday in North Carolina. Florence made landfall as a Category 1 storm and flooding from heavy rain forced many to call for rescue.