Hurricane Florence makes the landing in Wrightsville Beach, NC
Category 1 hurricane makes landfall at 7:15 to 90 mph winds; Janice Dean reports on the latest storm track.
Hurricane Florence made landfall near Wrightsville Beach, North Carolina, early Friday morning, on the already battered coast with hurricane-strength winds and heavy rainfall that officials warned could lead to catastrophic flooding in the interior.
The National Hurricane Center said Florence eyewall made landfall at 7:15 a.m. a few miles east of Wilmington, with an estimate of the maximum gusts of 90 km / h that pushed life-threatening storm miles inland, and, combined with a continuous pelting rain, severely damaged buildings.
NEW: #Hurricane #Florence has made landfall near Wrightsville Beach, North Carolina at 7:15 AM EDT (1115 UTC) with an estimate of the maximum gusts of 90 km / h (150 km/h) and a minimum central pressure estimate of 958 mb (28.29″). https://t.co/tW4KeGdBFb pic.twitter.com/vzpe6MjTf9
— National Hurricane Center (@NHC_Atlantic) September 14, 2018
HURRICANE FLORENCE PATH: THE TRACK OF THE STORM HERE
Forecasters said the terrifying attack would take hours, because Florence was barely moving along and still drawing energy from the ocean. She said: “catastrophic” freshwater flooding was expected along the inland waterways of the Carolina’s.
Officials said Friday that they expected the same amount of precipitation during Hurricane Floyd in 1999. However, instead of the precipitation over 14 days, Florence will be about 3 days.
Cajun Marine in North Carolina ready to help storm victims
The USGS said the tide in Emerald Isle, N. C., was 7 feet above sea level, while the streets flowed with frothy ocean water. Almost 46 km of the water in New Bern, about 150 people were waiting to be saved from the flood on the Neuse River, WXII-TV reported.
“It is a very terrifying, the wind howling, and the rain is blowing sideways, debris flying,” Sandie Orsa of Wilmington, told the Associated Press, a hotel lobby lit by emergency lights after the power failed.
More than 455,000 people had already lost power at 8:30 pm
Hurricane Florence @ midnight 9.13.18
Pungo River raging across Belhaven, NC
Stay safe y’all! pic.twitter.com/zYbKCKBLnY
— Michelle 🦄 (@chromatichues) September 14, 2018
Forecasters said conditions will continue to deteriorate as the storm creeps into the interior. The increase can cover, but a sliver of the Carolina coast under as much as 11 meters of the ocean, and the days of the rains could unload more than 3 metres of rain, the touch of a severe flood.
Once a Category 4 hurricane with wind speeds of 140 km / h, the hurricane was downgraded to a Category 1 on Thursday evening.
North Carolina Gov. Roy Cooper urged residents to seek shelter and to stay alert.
“Do not relax, not be complacent. Stay on guard. This is a powerful storm that can kill. Today, the threat becomes a reality,” Cooper said.
Soon after, the Florence is made to arrive, President Trump touted the work of the FEMA and first responders.
“Fantastic work is being done by FEMA, the emergency services, police and justice and all. Thank you!”, he wrote.
Fantastic work being done by FEMA, the emergency services, police and justice and all. Thank you!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) September 14, 2018
FULL COVERAGE OF HURRICANE FLORENCE
Officials said that around 1.7 million people in the Carolina and Virginia were warned to evacuate, but it is unclear how many have. The houses of around 10 million euro under watches or warnings for the hurricane or tropical storm conditions.
In Jacksonville, N. C., about 70 residents, including a child, other children and pets – were evacuated from the Triangle Motor Inn after the hurricane-force wind collapsed parts of the roof of the hotel. The evacuees were taken to the Jacksonville Center for Public Safety authorities searched for more permanent quarters during the storm. Jacksonville is about 60 miles northeast of Wilmington.
Forecasters said that given the storm’s size and slow track, this may lead to the epic damage akin to what the Houston area saw during the Hurricane Harvey a little more than a year ago, with water swamping homes and businesses and washing industrial waste sites and hog manure ponds.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.
Lucia I. Suarez Sang a Reporter for FoxNews.com. Follow her on Twitter @luciasuarezsang