Hurricane Florence: Woman, baby die after tree falls on house

Hurricane Florence: Woman, baby die after tree falls on house

Wilmington Police confirmed that a mother and her infant died when a tree fell on their home.

Forecasters warned that drenching rains of 30 centimetres to 1 metre as the hurricane-turned-tropical storm crawls westward across North and SC could trigger epic flooding well inland over the next few days. Officials in South Carolina's Craven County say conditions are much worse than some residents expected, with almost 500 people calling the local emergency services hotline asking for help.

Two other people died in North Carolina's Carteret County, according to the county's emergency management services office.

The video shows The Weather Channel's Mike Seidel reporting from the Wilmington in United States' North Carolina as he struggles to stand during the storm Florence as two passerby walks behind completely unaffected.

At the time, the storm carried winds of about 90 miles per hour (145 km/h), making it a Category 1 storm, but that ranking belies the hurricane's massive clouds and the downpour it is visiting on the coastline, with some areas already drenched in 30 inches (76 centimeters) of rain.

A slowing tropical storm Florence continues to creep along the Carolinas today.

Duke Energy Corp, the area's biggest utility with more than 4 million customers, estimated the storm could cause between 1 million and 3 million outages.

In Lenoir County, a 78-year-old man was electrocuted attempting to connect extension cords, and another died when he was blown away by high winds while checking on his hunting dogs.

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At least 150 people were waiting to be rescued in New Bern, N.C., officials tweeted Thursday evening.

Winds bent trees towards the ground and raindrops flew sideways as Florence moved in for an extended stay, with enough of its killer winds swirling overseas to maintain its power.

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Prior to Hurricane Florence's landfall, more than 1.7 million were ordered to evacuate the coast. About 210,000 people were staying in 170 shelters in the Carolinas.

The National Hurricane Center says top sustained winds have dropped to near 50 miles per hour (80 kph) with higher gusts, and Florence is expected to become a tropical depression later Saturday.

"Our hearts go out to the families of those who died in this storm", Cooper said in a statement on Friday.

This story was compiled from McClatchy papers in North Carolina, the Charlotte Observer and Raleigh News & Observer; and in South Carolina, The State in Columbia, the Beaufort Gazette, The Island Packet in Hilton Head and The Sun News in Myrtle Beach; and supplemented with wire service reports.

Parts of West-central Virginia and far eastern West Virginia will see "life-threatening flash flooding and river flooding, along with an elevated risk for landslides", according to the agency.

"I actually think it is one of the best jobs that's ever been done with respect to what this is all about", Trump said on Monday.

Storm Florence may have weakened but the full extent of the damage it has wreaked may not become clear for days.

Evacuation orders have been lifted in several coastal SC counties as Florence continues to dump rain on the state. Many locations in southeast North Carolina are likely smash this old record by the time the rain ends.

More than 12,000 people were in shelters in North Carolina and 400 in Virginia, where the forecast was less dire.

In Wilmington, the storm tore down numerous trees when its centre tore through the area on Friday morning.

"And we're not done yet", Graham said, adding that some hard-hit areas could get an additional 15 to 20 inches because the storm was moving so slowly.

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