Florence hovers over coastal states, raising fears of epic flooding


A boat lays smashed against a vehicle garage, deposited there by the high winds and storm surge from Hurricane Florence along the Neuse River, Sept. 15, 2018, in New Bern, N.C.

Although Hurricane Florence's immediate impact on the Carolinas wasn't as bad as some people expected, the rains that have been falling on the East coast for the last few days have brought flooding that seems decidedly Biblical.

Florence could become a major test for the Federal Emergency Management Agency, which was heavily criticized as slow and unprepared past year for Hurricane Maria in Puerto Rico, where the death toll was put at almost 3,000.

US President Donald Trump has declared a disaster in the state of North Carolina, where a tropical storm has killed at least five people amid warnings the worst is far from over. SC also set a record for most rain in a single tropical weather system, previously set by Tropical Storm Jerry in 1995. "Those rivers are going to start to crest later today and Tuesday and maybe longer".

"This is still a catastrophic, life-threatening storm", said Zack Taylor, a meteorologist with the National Weather Service's Weather Prediction Centre.

"Many people who think that the storm has missed them have yet to see its threat", North Carolina Gov. Roy Cooper said.

In Wilmington, the state's eighth-largest city, residents waited for hours outside stores and restaurants for necessities such as water. "We still have about 100 that want to be rescued and we have about 1,200 in the shelters", Mayor Dana Outlaw told CNN.

"In a matter of seconds, my house was flooded up to the waist, and now it is to the chest", she said. As this storm continues to churn through North Carolina, it has dumped almost two feet or more of rain in many places.

And 1-year-old Kaiden Lee-Welch, who was swept away by rushing waters Sunday, was found dead Monday, also in Union County.

Woody White, chairman of the board of commissioners of New Hanover County, said officials were planning for food and water to be flown into the coastal city of almost 120,000 people.

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When evacuating flooded areas, don't rely on Global Positioning System to get you around high waters.

Hurricane Florence destroyed into the USA east coastline Friday with howling gusts of wind, torrential rains as well as frightening severe storm surges as crisis crews scrambled to save a huge selection of individuals trapped in their residences by overflow waters.

The sheriff's department and volunteers rescued stranded residents by boat, extracting families, infants, the elderly and pets.

Petrol stations were abandoned, with many pumps keeled over, and trees cluttered many roads, making them impassable. Conway city officials also expressed concerns with the county and state's flood-mitigation plan on the U.S. Highway 501 bridge.

Rescue team member Sgt. Nick Muhar, from the North Carolina National Guard 1/120th battalion, evacuates a young child as the rising floodwaters from Hurricane Florence threatens his home in New Bern, N.C., on Friday, Sept. 14, 2018. "Feels great. The water's really cool".

As of Saturday afternoon, about 752,000 homes and businesses were without power in North Carolina, along with 119,000 in SC.

The winds have died down but it was terrifying for people here when the hurricane-speed gusts first arrived.

Hurricane Florence continues to rip through the Carolinas in the U.S. today, wreaking destruction and causing widespread flooding and infrastructural damage.

"A lot of people have evacuated already", said Denise Harper, a resident of Grifton, a small North Carolina town threatened by rising water levels in a nearby creek and the River Neuse. As the storm "begins to finally recede, they will kick into an even higher gear. He calmed the waters and he's going to look after us".

By Sunday afternoon, Florence's winds had dropped to about 55 km/h, the National Hurricane Center said, with some weakening forecast over the next 24 hours before intensifying once again as an extratropical low-pressure centre.

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Sobre una posible revancha , señaló: "Si la gente quiere otra pelea, pues la hacemos, pero ahorita quiero estar con mi gente". Agregó que "yo creo que las calificaciones están muy cerca, por lo que yo creo que se puede garantizar una tercera pelea ".