Hurricane Florence's First Victims Are a Mother & Infant

Wortham moved to North Carolina a year ago after living in Florida for nine years and says she recently lived through hurricanes Matthew and Irma.

The National Hurricane Center described Florence's path as a wobble around southeastern North Carolina.

Hurricane Florence made landfall as a Category 1 storm in Wrightsville Beach, North Carolina, after stalking the Carolina coast for days.

Florence crashed into the Carolina coast on Friday, felling trees, dumping almost three feet (0.91 m) of rain on some spots and leading to the deaths of at least four people before it was downgraded to a tropical storm still capable of wreaking havoc.

"Florence slowly weakening just inland over eastern SC but causing catastrophic flooding over North and SC", the National Hurricane Center (NHC) said early Saturday morning, after downgrading it from a hurricane to a tropical storm the previous day.

The father was taken to New Hanover Regional Medical Center for treatment.

In Pender County, a woman died of a heart attack while paramedics raced to find a way through fallen debris to reach her home. Half a million people lacked power Friday.

Tropical storm-force winds extend outward up to 175 miles (280 kilometers) from its center. "And since we're already on high ground, those two things together kind of help insulate us a little more than, I would say, others", she said.

"Hurricane Florence is powerful, slow and relentless", Cooper said at a briefing.

Neighbour Adam Sparks said he noticed emergency responders arrive at the house across the street right around when his power went out and the storm was intensifying.

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These victims of the hurricane were staying at a hotel that took severe storm damage from Florence.

Storm surge was as high as 10 feet on the Neuse River, he said.

"Into next week our rivers are going to continue to rise and there will be more significant flooding", Cooper said.

Roads are particularly bad in Pamlico and Craven counties, with major and secondary roads flooded, according to Transportation Secretary Jim Trogdon.

Wilmington Police Chief Ralph Evangelous agreed, telling Muir, "I see a biblical proportion flood event that's going to occur".

About 20,000 people hunkered down in 157 schools, shelters and a coliseum in Winston-Salem.

Video below shows huge waves and storm surge crashing into a structure in North Topsail Beach.

Others who chose to stay at home perhaps regretted their decision.

"WE ARE COMING TO GET YOU", the city of New Bern tweeted around 2:30 a.m.

Boat teams including volunteers rescued some 360 residents, including Sadie Marie Holt, 67, who first tried to row out of her neighborhood during Florence's assault.

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