In Carteret County, North Carolina, there were six teams performing rescue operations Saturday but those efforts have been challenged by downed trees and power lines.
“While most homes experienced minor shingle and siding damage, there is an extensive amount of homes with damage from falling trees and high flood waters,” county officials said in a statement.
The National Hurricane Center warned that parts of southern and central South Carolina could get an additional 10 to 20 inches of rain, and that parts of the North Carolina coast south of Cape Hatteras are expected to see storm totals of between 30 and 40 inches of rain.
“This rainfall will continue to produce catastrophic flash flooding and prolonged significant river flooding,” the hurricane center said in a 8 p.m. bulletin.
Nearly 200 roads were closed throughout New Hanover County, North Carolina, where Wilmington is located, and Wilmington police were asking residents to stay inside and keep off the roads.
“We cannot stress enough how dangerous the road conditions are,” police tweeted Saturday afternoon.
Most of the deaths occurred in North Carolina, officials said. A woman and her infant were killed when a tree fell on their home in Wilmington; a woman died in Pender County after suffering a medical condition and large trees blocked roads to her home; two people died in Lenoir County; and three were killed in Duplin County in separate incidents when the cars they were in were washed away in high water, authorities said.
In South Carolina, a 61-year-old woman died after her car struck a downed tree on a highway in Union County Friday night, according to South Carolina Highway Patrol Capt. Kelley Hughes.
Cooper, the North Carolina governor, said Saturday that around 20,000 people were in more than 150 shelters across the state.
“To the people who have evacuated: If you are safe, stay put,” he said.
Wilmington police arrested five people who allegedly broke into and looted a Dollar General store on Saturday, the police department tweeted.
Also on Saturday, President Donald Trump approved a disaster declaration for North Carolina, which makes federal funding available to those affected. On Saturday evening, he tweeted his condolences to the families and friends of those who lost their lives in the storm.
New Bern said in a statement Saturday that 455 people were rescued from Florence’s floodwaters and that the operation was completed. The city thanked rescuers and volunteers who they said saved lives.
Moore, the New Bern resident, said she has lived in the area all her life but has never endured a storm like this.
“It’s been one of the worst ones. I’ve been here for years. I never heard of anything like this before,” she said. “It’s crazy. I’ve never seen anything like this before.”