Mother, baby among first 4 victims of Hurricane Florence

Mother, baby among first 4 victims of Hurricane Florence

Mother, baby among first 4 victims of Hurricane Florence

"We have been up here for like three or four hours", Perry added, "and there's no windows up here in the attic, so I put a light in the window so they would know someone's here".

WIND: Tropical storm conditions will continue through Saturday morning in portions of the warning area along the coast and also over large portions of eastern North Carolina and extreme eastern SC, with tropical storm force wind gusts spreading well inland.

The combination of a risky storm surge and the tide will cause normally dry areas near the coast to be flooded by rising waters moving inland from the shoreline.

More than 415,000 homes and businesses were without power on Friday morning, according to poweroutage.us which tracks the nation's electrical grid. Those interested in learning how to help can find more information on North Shore's website.

"This is an uninvited brute that just won't leave", Cooper said on "Today".

Storm surges could reach up to 11 feet, which could cause catastrophic flooding. A 78-year-old man was electrocuted attempting to connect extension cords while another man died when he was blown down by high winds while checking on his hunting dogs, a county spokesman said.

Shaken after seeing waves crashing on the Neuse River just outside his house in New Bern, restaurant owner and hurricane veteran Tom Ballance wished he had evacuated.

Florence was about 30 miles away from Wilmington as of 4 a.m.

Still, he said: "I feel like the dumbest human being who ever walked the face of the earth".

Hurricane Florence made landfall early Friday on North Carolina's coast, bringing extreme winds and massive storm surges as officials reported dozens of water rescues overnight. It came ashore along a mostly boarded-up, emptied-out stretch of coastline.

The eye of Florence, a Category 1 hurricane with 90 mph sustained winds, was 25 miles east of Wilmington at 5 a.m. Friday, according to a briefing issued by the National Hurricane Center.

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But it was clear that this was really about the water, not the wind.

Rainfall totals exceeding 16 inches thus far have been reported at several locations across southeastern North Carolina.

In all, the weather service says the greatest amounts of rain from Florence are likely in the southwestern portions of the region.

Hurricane Florence claimed its first victims Friday, after a mother and her baby were killed when a tree fell on their home in Wilmington, North Carolina.

"The combination of a unsafe storm surge and the tide will cause normally dry areas near the coast to be flooded by rising waters moving inland from the shoreline", the hurricane center advisory said.

Preparing for the worst, about 9,700 National Guard troops and civilians were deployed with high-water vehicles, helicopters and boats that could be used to pluck people from the floodwaters.

This next video below, taken by Mark Cogdell, shows a gas station on Market St.in Wilmington, North Carolina collapsing in Hurricane Florence's winds.

Governor Roy Cooper has warned of an impending disaster. Hurricane Florence will slow down as it approaches the coast and moves inland.

The National Hurricane Center said Florence will eventually make a right hook to the northeast over the southern Appalachians, moving into the mid-Atlantic states and New England as a tropical depression by the middle of next week. That's enough to fill the Chesapeake Bay, or cover the entire state of Texas with almost 4 inches (10 centimeters) of water.

Flooding in new bern due to Hurricane Florence.

North Carolina alone is forecast to get 9.6 trillion gallons enough to cover the Tar Heel state to a depth of about 10 inches. "These are folks who are maybe in one-story buildings and they're seeing the floodwaters rise".

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