Hurricane Florence kills at least three people

A video showing the potential impact of Hurricane Florence is blowing people’s minds

A video showing the potential impact of Hurricane Florence is blowing people’s minds

Hurricane Florence, weakened but still unsafe, has crashed into the Carolinas on Friday as a giant, slow-moving storm that stranded residents with floodwaters and swamped part of the town of New Bern at the beginning of what could be a days-long deluge.

HurricaneFlorence is inflicting its long, agonizing assault on the North Carolina coast, with winds whipping at 90 miles per hour and life-threatening storm surge pushing ashore as the lumbering storm's eyewall begins to reach the coast.

The powerful Category 1 storm is making its way south along the Carolina coast hours after making technical landfall early Friday morning. The storm is threatening catastrophic flooding while leaving scores in need of rescue from rising waters and hundreds of thousands without power.

It was expected to begin pushing its way westward across SC later in the day, in a watery siege that could go on all weekend. That's enough to fill the Chesapeake Bay or cover the entire state of Texas with almost 4 inches (10 centimeters) of water, he calculated.

North Carolina alone is forecast to get 36 trillion litres, enough to cover the North Carolina to a depth of about 25 cm. Gusty winds will send the ocean and rivers spilling into neighborhoods.

Shaken after seeing waves crashing in the Neuse River just outside his house in the town of New Bern, hurricane veteran Tom Ballance wished he had evacuated.


The Wilmington airport had a wind gust clocked at 169 km/hr the highest since Hurricane Helene in 1958. About 200 people were rescued in New Bern, a small coastal city 90 miles further north-west, with another 150 residents awaiting help after a 10ft surge in floodwater caused by hours of heavy rainfall.

Airlines canceled more than 2,100 flights through Sunday. Its designation then was "potential tropical cyclone six".

The wind howled and sheets of rain splattered against windows of a hotel before dawn in Wilmington, where Sandie Orsa of Wilmington sat in a lobby lit by emergency lights after the power failed.

"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.

Officials said some 1.7 million people in the Carolinas and Virginia were warned to evacuate, but it's unclear how many did.

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.

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