Carolinas brace for days of floods after Florence's deluge

Tony Alsup takes a selfie with the rescued dogs and cats

Tony Alsup takes a selfie with the rescued dogs and cats

As part of the Charlotte Hornets' effort to help residents who have suffered the devastation caused by Hurricane Florence, Hornets Chairman Michael Jordan had donated $2 million to organizations aiding in the relief and recovery efforts.

Although Hurricane Florence's immediate impact on the Carolinas wasn't as bad as some people expected, the rains that have been falling on the East coast for the last few days have brought flooding that seems decidedly Biblical.

Preliminary statistics from the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration showed Florence had the fourth-highest rainfall total of any hurricane to hit the US mainland since 1950, with 35.94 inches (91.2 centimeters) at Elizabethtown, North Carolina. Rising river levels threaten more closures, state officials said. Flash flood watches extended all the way to Pennsylvania, Maryland, New York and southern New England. One person was killed in Virginia by an apparent tornado whipped up by Florence, and six were killed in SC.

A 1-year-old North Carolina boy died in Florence's floodwaters when the vehicle his mother was driving was swept away.

The boy's mother drove around a barricade in the road and ended up stuck in rushing water on Sunday evening. Forecasters said it was expected to continue toward the Northeast, which is in for as much as 4 inches (10 centimeters) of rain, before the system moves offshore again.

Interstate 95 drivers traveling through the state were urged to go around North Carolina to avoid major stretches of flooding on the highway.

"We are struggling to get routes open to places like Wilmington, Columbus County, and Brunswick County-a lot of communities surrounded by water", and Cooper added, "The road situation is very dynamic from hour to hour".

Eric Tryggeseth, 59, found his home in Leland, North Carolina, without power on Monday and a tree laying in his front yard.

"I know people are frustrated from having to wait indoors for so long and many people are without power - that has got to be very hard - but even as we speak we are pulling out of floodwaters and are rescuing people". "I can't thank the first responders enough".

The coastal city took a direct hit when Hurricane Florence came ashore and has been largely cut off since then due to storm surges and flooding from the Cape Fear River.

More than 340,000 customers were without power on Tuesday morning, according to power companies, down from a peak of almost 1 million outages. The storm hit as a Category 1 hurricane near Wrightsville Beach Friday morning and moved slowly across the Carolinas, leading to historic rain.

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