Dozens trapped in storm surge as Hurricane Florence makes landfall in North Carolina

5 days 23 hours 41 minutes ago Friday, September 14 2018 Sep 14, 2018 Friday, September 14, 2018 6:50:00 AM CDT September 14, 2018 in News
By: Faith Karimi and Tina Burnside, CNN

(CNN) -- Hurricane Florence has made landfall in North Carolina, but its crawling pace and overwhelming storm surges are setting up hours and hours of destruction and human suffering -- with dozens desperately awaiting rescue in one flooded town alone.

The Category 1 hurricane, with wind of more than 90 mph and dumping 3 inches of rain an hour, made landfall at 6:15 a.m. near Wrightsville Beach, just east of Wilmington.

Florence's center may linger for another whole day along coastal North and South Carolina -- punishing homes with crushing winds and floods and endangering those who've stayed behind.

In the besieged North Carolina town of New Bern, rescuers plucked more than 100 people from rising waters, but about 150 more had to wait when conditions worsened and a storm surge reached 10 feet.

"In a matter of seconds, my house was flooded up to the waist, and now it is to the chest," said Peggy Perry, who along with three relatives, was trapped early Friday in her New Bern home. "We are stuck in the attic."

Officials urged residents there to take shelter at the highest points of their homes, including rooftops.

Florence's rain will reach 40 inches in some parts of the Carolina coasts, and gusty winds will send the ocean and rivers spilling into neighborhoods, forecasters said.

By Friday morning, Florence already had:

• Sapped power to nearly 437,000 customers in North and South Carolina, emergency officials said.

• Pushed in a storm surge of 10 feet above normal levels in Morehead City, North Carolina, the National Weather Service said.

• Forced more than 60 people to evacuate a hotel in Jacksonville, North Carolina, after part of the roof collapsed, city officials said.

• Canceled more than 1,300 flights along the East Coast through Friday.

Hours earlier, streets along the coast had been transformed into raging streams, and massive waves surged along the Outer Banks.

FOLLOW THE HURRICANE'S PATH

"There's already water (in the) bottom part of people's houses," Todd Willis, who lives in Kennel Beach, North Carolina, said Thursday night. "This is just the beginning."

Latest developments

• It's closing in: The eyewall is onshore in North Carolina, the National Hurricane Center said.

• Downgraded but dangerous: Though now a Category 1 storm, hurricane-force winds extend 80 miles from Florence's center, and it will linger for days, with prolonged winds and rain making it more dangerous.

• Ominous warning: "Don't focus on the category of the storm. Hurricane Florence will slow down as it approaches the coast and moves inland. This will cause extremely dangerous flooding," the Federal Emergency Management Agency warned.

• Areas threatened: Hurricane warnings and storm surge warnings are in effect for South Santee River in South Carolina to Duck, North Carolina.

• Location of Florence: By 7:35 a.m. Friday, the hurricane was about 5 miles (55 km) east of Wilmington and was crawling at 6 mph (9 kmh). At 90 mph, its wind speed was dipping but still dangerous.

Rescues and narrow escapes

More than 1 million people had been ordered to evacuate before the streets became inundated.

Morehead City resident Rebecca Marson decided not to evacuate because her surgeon husband wanted to remain behind with other first responders. They're riding out the storm at their home with four children -- ages 11 to 17 -- Marson's friend, four dogs, two chinchillas, a cat and a lizard.

Marson said they'd lost power and the winds were howling outside, but they had enough food and water to last them for days.

New Bern's WCTI television employees fled their studio Thursday night due to rising flood waters. Footage posted on social media showed a meteorologist saying on air that they had to evacuate. He then leaves the studio and leaves a radar of Florence's rain bands playing on a loop.

In Jacksonville, North Carolina, city officials posted photos of toppled gas pumps and a downed trees early Friday, warning residents to take shelter and avoid roadways.

Officials in several states have declared states of emergency, including in the Carolinas, Georgia, Virginia and Maryland, where coastal areas are still recovering from summer storms.

Sign up for Hurricane Florence alerts

Florence is one of four named storms in the Atlantic.

The-CNN-Wire
™ & © 2018 Cable News Network, Inc., a Time Warner Company. All rights reserved.

More News

Grid
List
JEFFERSON CITY - After being inactive for nearly a year, the Missouri Board of Education is launching a search for... More >>
11 hours ago Wednesday, September 19 2018 Sep 19, 2018 Wednesday, September 19, 2018 7:06:00 PM CDT September 19, 2018 in News
COLUMBIA - State Rep. Cheri Toalson Reisch, R-Hallsville, is changing the way she is fundraising after an ethics complaint and... More >>
12 hours ago Wednesday, September 19 2018 Sep 19, 2018 Wednesday, September 19, 2018 6:17:00 PM CDT September 19, 2018 in News
JEFFERSON CITY - The Jefferson City Police Department was on the scene of a double shooting Wednesday afternoon. Police... More >>
12 hours ago Wednesday, September 19 2018 Sep 19, 2018 Wednesday, September 19, 2018 6:00:00 PM CDT September 19, 2018 in News
COLUMBIA – Some people living in Columbia's southside neighborhoods say thieves, using creative technology, are stealing from cars. Haley... More >>
13 hours ago Wednesday, September 19 2018 Sep 19, 2018 Wednesday, September 19, 2018 5:28:00 PM CDT September 19, 2018 in News
COLUMBIA - As Welcome Home marks the first anniversary of its new shelter, a once drug-addicted veteran is artfully finding... More >>
14 hours ago Wednesday, September 19 2018 Sep 19, 2018 Wednesday, September 19, 2018 4:19:00 PM CDT September 19, 2018 in News
FULTON- After the State Auditor's report that more local money could go to domestic violence shelters, one survivor reiterated the... More >>
14 hours ago Wednesday, September 19 2018 Sep 19, 2018 Wednesday, September 19, 2018 3:52:00 PM CDT September 19, 2018 in News
COLUMBIA – Wednesday morning firefighters burned a simulated dorm room burn on the MU campus to show students how quickly... More >>
15 hours ago Wednesday, September 19 2018 Sep 19, 2018 Wednesday, September 19, 2018 3:13:00 PM CDT September 19, 2018 in News
COLE COUNTY – Cole County ended its economic development contract with the Jefferson City Area Chamber of Commerce Tuesday. The... More >>
15 hours ago Wednesday, September 19 2018 Sep 19, 2018 Wednesday, September 19, 2018 2:32:00 PM CDT September 19, 2018 in News
MEXICO - Sen. Claire McCaskill has announced she will oppose Judge Brett Kavanaugh's confirmation to the Supreme Court. McCaskill's... More >>
16 hours ago Wednesday, September 19 2018 Sep 19, 2018 Wednesday, September 19, 2018 2:30:00 PM CDT September 19, 2018 in News
KANSAS CITY (AP) — A former prosecutor and chairman of Missouri's Democratic Party has been sentenced to two years and... More >>
16 hours ago Wednesday, September 19 2018 Sep 19, 2018 Wednesday, September 19, 2018 1:55:00 PM CDT September 19, 2018 in Top Stories
COLUMBIA - The Columbia Fire Department ruled a Wednesday morning fire as suspicious. There were no injuries, but the... More >>
17 hours ago Wednesday, September 19 2018 Sep 19, 2018 Wednesday, September 19, 2018 1:28:00 PM CDT September 19, 2018 in News
COLUMBIA - As rivers are still rising in the aftermath of Hurricane Florence, donations are also flooding in. However,... More >>
17 hours ago Wednesday, September 19 2018 Sep 19, 2018 Wednesday, September 19, 2018 1:01:00 PM CDT September 19, 2018 in News
SEDALIA (AP) — A Kansas City man has pleaded guilty in the fatal shooting of another man at a trailer... More >>
17 hours ago Wednesday, September 19 2018 Sep 19, 2018 Wednesday, September 19, 2018 12:51:00 PM CDT September 19, 2018 in Top Stories
JEFFERSON CITY (AP) — The search for Missouri's next top education official has begun. The State Board of Education... More >>
19 hours ago Wednesday, September 19 2018 Sep 19, 2018 Wednesday, September 19, 2018 11:24:10 AM CDT September 19, 2018 in News
FULTON - UPDATE: Police have found the two boys who escaped from the Division of Youth Services. Police said... More >>
19 hours ago Wednesday, September 19 2018 Sep 19, 2018 Wednesday, September 19, 2018 10:38:00 AM CDT September 19, 2018 in Top Stories
HOWARD COUNTY - Two people are dead and two others injured after a crash on Highway 87 Tuesday afternoon. ... More >>
20 hours ago Wednesday, September 19 2018 Sep 19, 2018 Wednesday, September 19, 2018 9:51:00 AM CDT September 19, 2018 in News
COOPER COUNTY - Anthony Martin died in a crash in Cooper County on Sunday after losing control of his motorcycle.... More >>
23 hours ago Wednesday, September 19 2018 Sep 19, 2018 Wednesday, September 19, 2018 6:57:00 AM CDT September 19, 2018 in News
CAMDEN COUNTY - A Columbia woman was taken to the Lake Regional Hospital on Sunday after a crash involving a... More >>
23 hours ago Wednesday, September 19 2018 Sep 19, 2018 Wednesday, September 19, 2018 6:39:00 AM CDT September 19, 2018 in News
Columbia, MO
Broken Clouds 74°
7am 75°
8am 77°
9am 81°
10am 85°