Scenes of flooded streets, homes and businesses, power outages and pelting rains are emerging from the Carolinas as Hurricane Florence makes landfall in North Carolina.
Storm surges of up to six feet were forecast for Belhaven, North Carolina, where this video was recorded on the night of Sept. 13. It shows the depth of water in a Belhaven family’s garage.
“It’s toast,” Amy Powell Johnson said of the garage.
More than 1.7 million people in Virginia, North and South Carolina were told to evacuate ahead of Florence’s arrival. On the morning of Sept. 14, the National Hurricane Centre warned that “catastrophic” flooding and “life-threatening” storm surges were expected to spread inland.
According to poweroutage.us, more than 500,000 customers in North Carolina and 50,000 in South Carolina were without power on Friday morning, though the Weather Channel estimates up to 3 million customers could lose power in the Carolinas due to Florence.
9/14 11 AM EDT: Here are the Key Messages for #Hurricane#Florence. The life-threatening inland flood hazard will continue for days, even after it is no longer a tropical storm. https://t.co/tW4KeGdBFbpic.twitter.com/gUTmrlB7jZ
— National Hurricane Center (@NHC_Atlantic) September 14, 2018
North Carolina Emergency Management warned residents on Friday to stay indoors, avoid stagnant or moving flood waters and have their emergency kits ready. By that time, emergency crews had already been deployed to parts of the state where people were trapped by floodwaters.
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.
U.S. President Donald Trump took a moment on Friday to thank those responding to emergencies across the Carolinas.
“Incredible job being done by FEMA, First Responders, Law Enforcement and all,” he said on Twitter. “Thank you!”