‘Worst is yet to come’ as Florence continues to flood Carolinas

‘Worst is yet to come’ as Florence continues to flood Carolinas

‘Worst is yet to come’ as Florence continues to flood Carolinas

As the death toll from Florence grew and hundreds of people were pulled from flooded homes, North Carolina braced for catastrophic, widespread river flooding.

The death toll in Hurricane Florence that struck last week rose to 14, as torrential rains and heavy flooding continued to batter North Carolina and SC states.

The previous Category 4 hurricane has dumped almost three feet of rain in North Carolina since Thursday.

A mandatory evacuation order is in place in this area of North Carolina where the Cape Fear River is expected to crest at 62 feet on Tuesday.

Rescue crews used boats to carry more than 360 people from rising water in the river town of New Bern, North Carolina, while many of their neighbors awaited help.

The storm killed 17 people in North Carolina, including a mother and child hit by a falling tree, state officials said.

Rescue teams searched overnight for a one-year-old boy who was swept away outside Charlotte, North Carolina, after rushing water pushed his mother's vehicle off the road, the Union County Sheriff's Office said on Facebook. "Pay attention to the weather warnings and be ready to head for safer ground if you're asked to evacuate", Cooper warned residents during Sunday news conference. Weary, drenched coastal cities were scenes of daring rescues. If the river gets higher than 26 feet, "all bets are off", city public works deputy director Corey Walters said. CBS News' Meg Oliver reported swollen rivers are spilling over their banks onto the streets.

South Carolina's governor urged anyone in a flood-prone area to evacuate. "This is for real", Fayetteville Mayor Mitch Colvin (D) told residents.

The Swansboro total is the most for any tropical storm or hurricane north of Florida along the East Coast and represents a new two-day and three-day rainfall record for North Carolina. "We're still going to have issues coming forward".

Petrol stations were abandoned, with many pumps keeled over, and trees cluttered many roads, making them impassable.

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Trump previously declared states of emergency in North and SC, and Virginia to the north.

In Belville, just south of Leland, some shops had power restored on Sunday.

President Donald Trump said federal emergency workers, first responders and law enforcement officials were "working really hard".

"We lost all of our cars last night", Heath told her viewers, "because the water was above the headlights, even on our SUVs". Police guarded the door of one store, and only 10 people were allowed inside at a time.

A baby boy is among 17 people killed as rain and flooding from storm Florence continues to cause chaos in the US. The North Carolina Department of Transportation has warned drivers to stay away, after flooding has blocked off roads and major highways.

Swelling rivers and creeks threatened dams and bridges. But so far officials said the state's many lagoons of toxic hog waste had withstood the storm.

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.

The center of the storm was about 200 kilometres west southwest of Roanoke, Virginia and moving northeast at 20 kph, the weather service said.

Trump, who plans to visit the region this week, tweeted his condolences to the families and friends of those who died. Six people died in SC, including four in auto accidents and two from carbon monoxide from a portable generator.

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