Florence lumbers inland, leaving five dead, communities flooded

Hurricane-force winds extend outward up to 70 miles from the center and tropical-storm-force winds extend outward up to 195 miles.

It was downgraded to Category 1 before coming ashore on Friday near Wilmington.

Rescuers are working hastily to save those caught in rising flood waters as thousands of people living near North Carolina's rising rivers were ordered to evacuate Saturday.

DeSantis and Scott have taken pains to court the Puerto Rican vote, with Florida's outgoing governor having visited the island seven times since Hurricane Maria made landfall.

The weather service later measured a storm surge 10 feet deep in the city, which lies on the Neuse River near the Atlantic coast.

The AP video also shows the cat rescue.

High winds and storm surge from Hurricane Florence hits Swansboro N.C., on September 14, 2018.

Storm surges - the bulge of ocean water pushed ashore by the hurricane - were as high as 10 feet, backing up onto rivers already swollen by almost two feet of rain. Floodwaters submerged U.S. Highway 264, cutting off a major route to other flood-prone areas along the river and the adjacent Pamlico Sound.

Across the Trent River from New Bern, Jerry and Jan Andrews returned home after evacuating to find carp flopping in their backyard near the porch stairs.

Coast Guard helicopters were taking off across the street to rescue stranded people from rooftops and swamped cars.

By Saturday morning the winds weakened to 50mph but the storm's slow speed means that communities in North Carolina are receiving a prolonged battering by torrential rain.

Two fins were spotted in the high water in Wilmington. The Army Corps of Engineers was preparing to start work restoring power, installing temporary roofing and removing debris.

Charley English of the American Red Cross said anyone wondering how to help from afar can donate blood, registering first at their local Red Cross websites.

Wind speeds are kicking up far from the coast in central SC as Hurricane Florence slowly makes its way along the coast.

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The victor of all kinds of weather reporting would be this reportage.

Tropical Storm Florence dumped "epic" amounts of rain on North and SC as it trudged inland on Saturday, triggering risky flooding, toppling trees, cutting power to almost a million homes and businesses while causing at least five deaths. Its forward movement was 6 miles per hour (9 kph).

In its initial onslaught along the coast, Florence buckled buildings, deluged entire communities and knocked out power to more than 900,000 homes and businesses. "We all know that".

Perry says his department has been in contact with power companies and gas pipeline operators.

In Washington, President Donald Trump was briefed by telephone Saturday on Florence's impact.

Almost 814,000 homes in North Carolina and 170,000 in SC are without power.

The National Hurricane Center said the storm would dump as much as 30 to 40 inches (76-102 cm) of rain on the southeastern coast of North Carolina and part of northeastern SC, as well as up to 10 inches (25 cm) in southwestern Virginia.

In general, south eastern sections of North Carolina like Wilmington and Fayetteville are at risk of flooding. That, in turn, could trigger epic flooding well inland.

The National Hurricane Center says Hurricane Florence has finally made landfall near Wrightsville Beach, North Carolina.

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. She was eventually rescued by a boat crew; 140 more awaited assistance.

Officials found a basketball-sized hole in the hotel wall and other life-threatening damage, with some cinder blocks crumbling and parts of the roof collapsing.

None of the people rescued were injured.

"High winds and severe flooding from Hurricane Florence will impede the pace of our outage restoration efforts".

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