Even though Hurricane Florence has been downgraded to a tropical storm, it doesn’t lessen the amount of rain it is drenching the Carolinas with.
Today, the known death toll has risen to 11. Rescue crews are still trying to remove and save people from the rising waters, but Florence is proving to be a formidable enemy.
Thousands of people have been advised to evacuate due to concerns that flooding might rise beyond anything that has happened in North Carolina’s past. Flooded areas have reached depths of up to two feet and another foot and a half is expected over the weekend.
“I cannot overstate it: Floodwaters are rising, and if you aren’t watching for them, you are risking your life,” Gov. Roy Cooper stated in an article by the Associated Press.
Many of the deaths occur in fresh water with people in their cars, so don’t drive across moving or standing water.
There may be downed trees and other debris that cannot be seen under the water, including downed power lines.
More than 20,00 people are currently staying in 157 emergency shelters in North Carolina.
It is expected that the rain will not slow down for Sunday and the possibility of gusty winds and tornadoes is likely. Still, flooding is the main concern.
The Waccamaw River in South Carolina is expected to rise about 12 feet by Wednesday. If this happens, it threatens to breach embankments next to a coal ash dump near a closed Santee Cooper Power Plant could unleash 200,000 tons of ash laced with toxic chemicals.