Storm Florence prompts Trump to declare a disaster

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A damaged house is seen after Hurricane Florence struck in Winnabow, North Carolina, U.S., September 15, 2018.

Hurricane-force winds were extending out up to 80 miles from the center, and tropical-storm-force winds extended up to 195 miles, the center said.

At 2 p.m. Saturday, Florence was inching west at 3 mph (6 kph), with its center located about 50 miles (85 kilometers) west of Myrtle Beach, South Carolina.

A person inside the house in the 700 block of Violet Street reported leg pain as a result of the incident and was taken to a hospital, according to Lexington County spokesman Harrison Cahill. The governor's office said a man was electrocuted while trying to connect extension cords in the rain. His body was discovered by family members.

Also in Kinston, a 77-year-old man died while checking on his hunting dogs outside in the storm.

Rain is forecast to continue through the weekend, bringing unsafe flooding conditions to many areas of North Carolina.

The National Weather Service says 14 to 15 inches of rain has already fallen north of Swansboro, North Carolina. He called the rain an event that comes along only once every 1,000 years.

Cops say a woman in Pender County, NC, died after suffering a heart attack but paramedics were unable to reach her due to blocked roads.

"With the wet ground and the heavy rain that could still occur, that could lead to some trees down and maybe even some power outages", Moss said. In New Bern, the unsafe conditions prompted officials in the coastal city to place the city under 24-hour curfew at 7 a.m. Friday.

Zaytoun said he didn't leave his home because he knew he wouldn't have been able to get back to it once the flooding began.

Cooper had a stark warning to any residents considering returning to their flooded home towns.

"Things here are very, very serious", he said.

"I feel like the dumbest human being who ever walked the face of the earth", he said. Officials said more than 100 people were rescued from floods on Friday, with 60 to 75 awaiting rescue on Saturday.

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Cinder blocks that were part of the structure crumbled in some places, and portions of the roof were missing.

The National Hurricane Center said Florence's top sustained winds have weakened to 45 miles per hour (75 kph). Coastal towns in the Carolinas were largely empty, and schools and businesses closed as far south as Georgia.

Flooding and a strong storm surge prompted more than 90 calls to the emergency operation center in Craven County, N.C., for residents trapped in vehicles and homes, spokeswoman Amber Parker said.

"This storm will be a marathon vs. a sprint", the National Weather Service said on Twitter.

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.

"Five deaths have been confirmed as related to the devastating storm and more are under investigation", Cooper said.

A wind gust at the Wilmington airport was clocked at almost 170km/h, the highest since Hurricane Helene in 1958.

Gardner said the Cape Fear River, which is now at 2.4 feet is likely to reach 22.9 feet by Monday. The figure for SC was 170,000.

"If it goes up to my front step, I have to get out", Quintin Washington said.

"The worst of the storm is over", Wright tells TIME. See social media posts from journalists and first responders.

The deadly storm made landfall on the east coast of the USA on Friday bringing with it "biblical" flooding on what's been described as a "thousand-year rain event".

Thousands of people living near North Carolina's rising rivers were ordered evacuated Saturday as hurricane-turned-tropical storm Florence practically parked itself over land and poured on the rain Saturday, raising fears that the state could be in for the most destructive flooding in its history.

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