Florence, a wet and unwanted visitor, besieges Carolinas

Watch Hurricane Florence Make Landfall in This Incredible Space Station Video

Tropical Storm Florence made landfall Friday morning as a Category 1 hurricane and has continued to weaken as it slowly moves inland.

The National Hurricane Center said Florence's top sustained winds have weakened to 45 miles per hour (75 kph).

Yesterday, the European Space Agency released a short video of astronauts aboard the space station watching the storm out of the cupola armed with powerful cameras to capture its giant knot of storm clouds.

"Two people in Wilmington were killed when a tree fell on their home", North Carolina Governor Roy Cooper told WCNC.

Forecasters warned that drenching rains totaling up to 3.5 feet could trigger epic flooding well inland through early next week. Rescue crews have used boats to reach hundreds of people trapped by the rising waters. Officials in South Carolina's Craven County say conditions are much worse than some residents expected, with almost 500 people calling the local emergency services hotline asking for help. Along the Neuse River, emergency responders pulled off some 200 rescues overnight and Friday morning, and about 150 people were still awaiting help, city spokeswoman Colleen Roberts said.

South Carolina Governor Henry McMaster is giving another update on the state's response to Tropical Storm Florence.

Although the storm is beginning to move away, WRAL Chief Meteorologist Greg Fishel said the Triangle should still expect heavy rain for the next 24 hours.

"WE ARE COMING TO GET YOU", New Bern city officials said on Twitter.

Hurricane Florence edged closer to the east coast of the United States on Thursday, with tropical-force winds and rain already lashing barrier islands just off the North Carolina mainland.

Storm surges - the bulge of ocean water pushed ashore by the hurricane - were as high as 10 feet (3 meters). Additional emergency personnel from 22 states have arrived in North Carolina to assist with the storm, including swift water rescue teams, emergency medical personnel, and others.

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Hurricane Florence: North Carolina devastated by ‘CATASTROPHIC’ floods
A fourth person reportedly was killed while plugging in a generator in the state's Lenoir County, according to USA media. By Friday evening, the centre of the storm had moved to eastern SC , with maximum sustained winds of 70 miles per hour .

Officials in North Carolina's Harnett County, about 90 miles inland, urged residents of about 1,100 homes to evacuate because the Lower Little River was rising toward record levels.

According to the National Hurricane Center's latest forecast on September 15, the storm is projected to move northwest across the weekend before exiting the Carolinas and hitting Tenessee and Kentucky late Sunday into Monday.

Jon Wright considers himself one of the lucky residents of Wilmington, N.C. - so far.

A mother and baby were killed when a tree fell on their home in Wilmington.

Power outages are widespread, affecting over 740,000 homes and businesses in North Carolina and 163,000 in SC.

It may be hard to believe.but there's MUCH more rain to come. But Outlaw said on Friday morning it's "not a bad idea to get in your vehicle and get west of I-95" if residents feel they can safely do so.

The White House said President Donald Trump would visit hurricane-hit areas next week "once it is determined his travel will not disrupt any rescue or recovery efforts".

Florence now huge, slow-moving tropical storm.

The National Weather Service says the worst flooding will likely start Saturday night or Sunday morning and will continue for several days.

Florence's eye made landfall over the Wrightsville Beach water tower about 7:15 a.m. Friday, according to the National Weather Service (NWS) office in Wilmington.

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