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More than 300,000 without power as Hurricane Florence batters North Carolina

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Report: Hurricane Florence caused by power failure

Fox News’ Ray Bogan reports on Hurricane Florence of Wilmington, North Carolina.

More than 300,000 people were without power in North Carolina early Friday morning, as Hurricane Florence struck the region with strong winds and heavy rainfall.

From 6:00 pm local time, 321,692 residents were experiencing power outages, according to the North Carolina Department of Safety.

The majority of those affected were in New Hanover, Carteret, Onslow, Pender and Craven counties.

Duke Energy told Fox News 3 million customers, which represents about 75 percent of their customers in the Carolina’s, could lose power.

The company has enlisted more than 10,000 employees, including 1,700 employees from the Midwest and 1,200 of Florida to help in the relief efforts to get the power back as soon as possible.

Duke Energy ready for Hurricane #Florence with the largest Carolina storm response ever. https://t.co/bKpafdYm2G pic.twitter.com/6bmtR6QmZz

— Duke Energy (@DukeEnergy) September 14, 2018

The storm was downgraded late Thursday to a Category 1, such as the North Carolina coast was hit by hurricane-force winds and a life-threatening storm surge.

In addition to the power outages, the authorities work with federal responders to rescue at least 150 residents who reported stranded in Florence storm surge.

The National Hurricane Center said that around 4 a.m. that the eyewall of the storm is beginning to reach the coast of North Carolina.

Fox News Ray Bogan contributed to this report.

Benjamin Brown is a reporter from Fox News. Follow him on Twitter @bdbrown473.

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