The storm was expected to move across parts of southeastern North Carolina and eastern SC on Friday and Saturday, then head north over the western Carolinas and central Appalachian Mountains early next week, the NHC said.
It is now a tropical storm with top sustained winds of 90 miles per hour (150 kph), but a gust of 112 miles per hour (180 kph) was reported just offshore.
Hurricane-force winds extend outward up to 70 miles from the center and tropical-storm-force winds extend outward up to 195 miles.
A man attached to a respiratory machine sits in a shelter run by Red Cross before Hurricane Florence comes ashore in Grantsboro, N.C., September 13, 2018.
Evacuations underway in North Carolina.
A yacht sits on the Neuse river bank in between buildings after hurricane Florence passed through the area. “This system is unloading epic amounts of rainfall”.
Just after midnight, the station tweeted that everyone had safely evacuated.
Authorities expect the death toll to rise in the coming days. “We face walls of water”.
There are at least two other coal-fired Duke plants in North Carolina that are likely to affected by the storm.
In Wilmington, a city of about 120,000 on North Carolina’s Atlantic coastline, along the Cape Fear River that is home to historic mansions, streets were strewn with downed tree limbs and carpeted with leaves and other debris.
The Governor urged residents and travellers to avoid driving throughout the state because most roads are still at risk of major flooding as rain continues to hammer down.
Downtown New Bern, on the Neuse River also is flooded.
A day after Florence’s landfall in North Carolina, water is shaping up to be the storm’s deadliest impact – and the rains will only keep coming as flood damage mounts.
Cline said July was the wettest ever in that part of North Carolina, and the water table rose 21 inches higher than normal. “Then maybe I’ll take my family to closest shelter”, he said. “I love hurricanes. But this one has been an experience for me”, she said.
Wind speeds are kicking up far from the coast in central SC as Hurricane Florence slowly makes its way along the coast.
The hurricane was downgraded to a tropical storm on Friday evening, and the National Weather Servicesaid early Saturday that it was “slowly weakening”.
As Hurricane Florence, now downgraded to a tropical storm, continued to chart a path of destruction across North and SC on Saturday, school gymnasiums morphed into makeshift shelters for thousands of people displaced from their homes in nearby flood-prone areas.
Mr Cooper said: “North Carolina Emergency Management experts have been sharing flood mapping with local officials”. We know how to manage expectations.
Perry says his department has been in contact with power companies and gas pipeline operators. “When a hurricane like Florence hits, we have to hope and pray that our communities do not suffer the consequences of years of irresponsible coal ash practices by the coal ash utilities”.
Florence is projected to migrate at barely more than a walking pace across northern SC, passing close to the city of Florence – truly – on Saturday.
The centre of the slow-moving storm, downgraded from a Category 1 hurricane after it came ashore Friday afternoon, was almost stalled over SC early Saturday, about 55 kilometres west of Myrtle Beach, moving west-southwest at just 8 km/h and scooping massive amounts of moisture from the sea.
Videos posted to social media show storm surges flooding into homes as they race inland. Morehead City, North Carolina, had received 23 inches (58 centimeters) of rain by Friday night with more torrents on the way.
In neighboring SC, 155,000 customers are without power, officials said.
After reaching a terrifying Category 4 peak of 140 mph (225 kph) earlier in the week, Florence made landfall as a Category 1 hurricane at 7:15 a.m.at Wrightsville Beach, a few miles (kilometres) east of Wilmington and not far from the SC line.
People around the Carolinas are being told that say they can buy flood insurance policy right now that will cover damage done by Florence, according to FEMA.
In New Bern, along the coast, homes were completely surrounded by water, and rescuers used inflatable boats to reach people Saturday.
None of the people rescued were injured.