As has been reported by the National Weather Service, which includes the National Hurricane Center, the potential for “catastrophic” flooding to include inland rivers and lakes in the Carolinas means some may be “under water for days and possibly a week or more.”
At noon on Thursday, when landfall was not expected for another 12 hours, ocean surge had already inundated coastal communities including New Bern and Top Sail Beach, where evacuations were mandatory, though many did not leave.
Men pack their belongings after evacuating their house after the Neuse River went over its banks and flooded their street during Hurricane Florence September 13, 2018 in New Bern,.
The surge by late Thursday night means hundreds were stranded and called for rescue.
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DEVELOPING—Ongoing water rescues in New Bern, NC where there is a flash flood EMERGENCY.
200 people have been rescued, 150 more waiting
(📸: New Bern PD)
Live coverage on @weatherchannel #Florence pic.twitter.com/jcrQTw4SMH
— Tevin Wooten (@TevinWooten) September 14, 2018
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Meanwhile, it had been cautioned for days that with a storm of its size, some 300 to 500 miles across, not to mention its near-stalling and now, slowly approaching land, Florence will dump feet of rain.
Life-threatening, catastrophic flash flooding and prolongedsignificant river flooding are likely over portions of the Carolinasand the southern and central Appalachians through early next weekas #Florence is expected to slow down as it approaches the coast andmoves inland. pic.twitter.com/tPbTRYlhW9
— NWS WPC (@NWSWPC) September 14, 2018
“Life-threatening, catastrophic flash flooding and prolonged significant river flooding are likely over portions of the Carolinas and the southern and central Appalachians through early next week,” the NWC said.
LIVE: Flooding in New Bern, N.C. as Florence slams the coast
Courtesy: LSM/Brandon Clement https://t.co/b9xbTBeTSN pic.twitter.com/zk3IbMFjCu
— ABC 33/40 News (@abc3340) September 14, 2018
In its bulletin and public advisory Friday morning, the NHC says that the “combination of a dangerous storm surge and the tide will cause normally dry areas near the coast to be flooded by rising waters moving inland from the shoreline.”
From Cape Fear to Cape Lookout the water will rise to 7 to 11 feet with higher amounts in the Neuse, Pamlico, Pungo, and Bay rivers. From Cape Lookout to Ocracoke Inlet waters will rise up to 9 feet and other coastal areas and rivers will see water rising anywhere from 2 to 6 feet, the NHC says.
The Trent River overflows its banks and floods a neighborhood on Thursday, a half day before Florence made landfall at Wrightsville Beach at around 8 a.m. Friday. Catastrophic flooding is certain for the coastal Carolinas.
“The deepest water will occur along the immediate coast in areas of onshore winds, where the surge will be accompanied by large and destructive waves. Surge-related flooding can vary greatly over short distances,” the advisory reads.
This is a few blocks up from the river in downtown New Bern, NC… floods brought all this debris up the street, including this dumpster which sailed in from down the road. #Florence pic.twitter.com/w804DFG1Vo
— Kailani Koenig (@kailanikm) September 14, 2018
The rainfall from Florence will only make matters far worse as it’s expected to be “heavy and excessive” in southeastern coastal North Carolina into far northeastern South Carolina (with) an additional 20 to 25 inches, with isolated storm totals of 30 to 40 inches. This rainfall will produce catastrophic flash flooding and prolonged significant river flooding.”
The key takeaway is that the flooding from Florence will not only be record-breaking or close, it will be life threatening and prolonged.
This house pictured taking a beating already…. not good #HurricaneFlorence pic.twitter.com/Jz938Ml5MP
— 🇺🇸✯Zach Lowder✯🇺🇸 (@Z_Lowder14) September 13, 2018
This story will be updated.
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