Does it matter that Florence is moving slowly?
As Hurricane Florence crashed onto the Carolinas, federal emergency teams prepared themselves to work on a long process of rebuilding the storm-battered landscape it would leave behind.
The centre of the hurricane's eye came ashore at about 0715 EDT near Wrightsville Beach close to Wilmington, North Carolina, with sustained winds of 150 kilometres per hour, the National Hurricane Center (NHC) said.
Hurricane-force winds extend up to 80 miles from the centre, and tropical storm effects reach 195 miles, The Independent reported.now less than 100 miles from Wilmington, North Carolina, the "meandering" Florence has been described as a "horrific nightmare storm" because meteorologists can not pinpoint where it will strike.
Coastal streets were inundated with ocean water, causing damage to dozens of homes and businesses, officials said.
Roads and intersections on North Carolina's Outer Banks barrier islands were inundated. Twenty inches (50 cm) were reported by early Friday afternoon in the town of Oriental.
"I had a lot of fear initially but I'm glad to be inside and safe", said Zelda Allen, 74, a retired tax accountant from Hampstead, North Carolina, who was riding out the storm at Wilmington's Hotel Ballast with her husband. "These are folks who are maybe in one-story buildings and they're seeing the floodwaters rise".
A mother and baby were killed when a tree fell on a house, according to a tweet from Wilmington police.
Region now under hurricane, storm surge watches
Maximum sustained winds were clocked at 140 miles per hour (220 kph) as it moved west-northwest at 13 miles per hour (20 kph). The National Hurricane Center said Monday the monster storm will be close to Category 5 strength by Tuesday.
"It's insane", he said in a phone interview. He was pleased to get the texts, a sign that he still had cell phone reception, and made a decision to go rev up his generator that is now powering is refrigerator and his satellite TV, which he's spent a portion of Friday watching.
Right now, the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration's National Hurricane Center is predicting that Florence will become a tropical storm tomorrow (Sept. 15) over SC, continue northwest to eastern Kentucky, then swing northeast and track over most of New England early next week. Duke Energy, a local power company, estimated that up to three million customers could lose their supply as a result of Florence.
Once a Category-4 hurricane with winds of 225kph, the hurricane was downgraded to Category 1 on Thursday night.
A tree fell on a homeowner's vehicle, parked in the driveway as Hurricane Florence made landfall in Wilmington, North Carolina.
Parker says that while she's holding up OK so far, she worries about her friends and others in the community, and about how Florence might impact her home.
THE life-threatening hurricane, Florence, is expected to hover the Carolinas in the U.S. with torrential rains, high winds and massive coastal erosion.
"WE ARE COMING TO GET YOU", New Bern city officials said on Twitter. "I'm a little bit scared right now, but I have my iPad and I'm watching Netflix".
More than 1.7 million people in the Carolinas and Virginia were warned to evacuate, but it is not clear how many left.