Published: Sat, September 15, 2018
Culture | By Margie Dunn

Hurricane Florence: How Bad Will the Flooding Be in Charleston, SC?

Hurricane Florence: How Bad Will the Flooding Be in Charleston, SC?

A man who was trapped inside his New Bern, North Carolina, home by Tropical Storm Florence spoke with Fox & Friends on Saturday.

A mother and infant in North Carolina were among the first reported fatalities linked to Hurricane Florence.

The monster Category 2 storm closed in with 105mph winds as forecasters warned that the widening storm - and its likelihood of lingering around the coast for days - would bring life-threatening storm surge and torrential rains.

Rain bands with tropical-storm-force winds have moved onshore over the Outer Banks of North Carolina.

As of 1 p.m. ET, more than a foot of rain had fallen in many towns in southeastern North Carolina.

REUTERS/Eduardo Munoz REFILE - CORRECTING GRAMMAR AND TYPO IN CITY NAME People wait to be rescued by members of the U.S. Army during the passing of Hurricane Florence in the town of New Bern, North Carolina, U.S., September 14, 2018.

Roy Cooper called Florence an "uninvited brute" that could wipe out entire communities as it grinds its way across land.

Weather.com says of the expected storm surges: "A destructive storm surge will accompany the eye coming ashore sometime from Thursday night into Friday or Saturday, and coastal flooding may persist through multiple high tide cycles into this weekend east of the center of Florence".

Forecasters say catastrophic freshwater flooding is expected over parts of North Carolina and SC ahead.

"It can not be emphasized enough that the most serious hazard associated with slow-moving Florence is extremely heavy rainfall, which will cause disastrous flooding that will be spreading inland", forecasters said, reports CBS News.

Its top sustained winds have dropped to 70 miles per hour, and it's at a near standstill, moving west at just 3 miles per hour.

Hurricane Florence is thrashing the Carolina coast with devastating flooding and hurricane-force winds. "Into next week our rivers are going to continue to rise and there will be more significant flooding", Cooper said.

"It's moving very, very slowly", the weather service's Baker said of the hurricane.

Power outages are widespread, affecting over 740,000 homes and businesses in North Carolina and 163,000 in SC. That's enough to fill the Chesapeake Bay or cover the entire state of Texas with almost 10 centimetres of water, he calculated.

North Carolina alone is forecast to get 9.6 trillion gallons, enough to cover the Tar Heel state to a depth of about 10 inches (25 centimeters).

On Friday, coastal streets in the Carolinas flowed with frothy ocean water, and pieces of torn-apart buildings flew through the air. Shortly afterward, the National Weather Service reported wind gusts to 105 miles per hour at Wilmington International Airport, the highest wind gust measured in Wilmington since Hurricane Helene hit the port city in 1958.

Airlines canceled more than 2,100 flights through Sunday.

About150 people were awaiting rescue in New Bern, N.C. early Friday morning, and multiple news outlets report some 60 people had to be evacuated from a motel in Jacksonville, N.C. overnight after it sustained structural damage as the Category 1 hurricane made landfall.

"Flash flooding will be extreme and flood waters will come up quickly and seemingly out of nowhere", the governor said.

Florence also blew down trees, including one that went through the roof of Kevin DiLoreto's home in Wilmington.

A video of a live segment of him in Wilmington, North Carolina, shows him bracing his feet on where he's standing, presumably so he won't be blown over during his segment. A 77-year-old man was apparently knocked down by the wind and died after going out to check on his hunting dogs, Lenoir County authorities said. Businesses and homes in the storm's path were boarded up and thousands of people had moved to emergency shelters by Thursday.

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