Losing Speed, Tropical Storm Florence Will Continue Slowly Through The Carolinas

APA man crosses a flooded street in downtown Wilmington N.C. after Hurricane Florence made landfall Friday Sept. 14 2018

APA man crosses a flooded street in downtown Wilmington N.C. after Hurricane Florence made landfall Friday Sept. 14 2018

Thousands of people living near North Carolina's rising rivers were ordered evacuated Saturday as hurricane-turned-tropical storm Florence practically parked itself over land and poured on the rain Saturday, raising fears that the state could be in for the most destructive flooding in its history.

The Wilmington region could see "storm totals between 30 and 40 inches along the North Carolina coastal areas south of Cape Hatteras".

Warning of the storm's continued threat to life, Governor Roy Cooper said: "More people now face imminent threat than when the storm was offshore". By 2 p.m., more than 658,000 customers were without power across North Carolina, and the Triangle had begun to experience outages.

New Bern spokeswoman Colleen Roberts said 455 people in all were rescued in the town of 30,000 residents without any serious injuries or deaths.

Florence pounded away at the coast with torrential downpours and surging seas, rescue crews used boats to reach more than 360 people besieged by rising waters in New Bern, while many of their neighbours awaited help.

Forecasters say prolonged rainfall from Florence could produce catastrophic flash flooding and significant river flooding.

"If it goes up to my front step, I have to get out", Quintin Washington said.

Holt, who has diabetes and clogged arteries, said she stayed for doctor's appointments that were canceled at the last minute.

The National Hurricane Center said a gauge in Emerald Isle, North Carolina, reported 6.3 feet (1.92 meters) of inundation. North Carolina corrections officials said more than 3,000 people were relocated from adult prisons and juvenile centers in the path of Florence, and more than 300 county prisoners were transferred to state facilities. More than 60 people had to be rescued in another town as a cinderblock motel collapsed at the height of the storm's fury.

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Roads became flooded, trees blown over and homes destroyed as some parts of North Carolina have already seen surges of flood water as high as 10ft.

"We moved all the furniture up in case the water comes in but the water seems to be staying at the edge of the driveway", he said, adding that if the wind picks up and the rain keeps coming, that could change.

A mother and baby were killed when a tree fell on their home in Wilmington. This comes a day after 90 miles per hour winds and torrential rain came down on North Carolina, making rivers rise to record levels.

The National Hurricane Center has revealed its latest projections for Tropical Storm Florence.

The video had been viewed more than 3.6 million times and had received nearly 60,000 retweets as of Friday evening.

Parts of southern North Carolina and northeastern SC could see another foot or more of rain over the weekend, according to National Weather Service.

Some local residents described a harrowing retreat as the storm hit early on Friday.

The White House said President Trump had issued a disaster declaration for North Carolina a day earlier, freeing up funds for housing and home fix.

"It was pitch black and I was just scared out of my mind", said Tracy Singleton, who with her family later drove through torrential rain and high winds from her home near New Bern to a hotel some almost 80 miles (130 km) away. Trump, who spoke with state and local officials on Friday, plans a visit to the region next week.

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