The rainy summer has already caused some flooding at the zoo, so Kottyan said it has already identified problem areas on the grounds and is taking measures to guard against additional flooding from the hurricane, such as blocking animal stall doors with hay bails. Evacuations have begun for people who live in the path of the hurricane which is expected to last a few days. US President Donald Trump on Tuesday signed declarations of emergency for North Carolina, South Carolina and Virginia, freeing up federal resources for storm response.
The town of Oriental had gotten more than 457mm of rain just a few hours into the deluge, while Surf City had 355mm and it was still coming down.
Gov. Cooper told Morning Edition that he expects flooding could get worse as more rain falls and that the state's No. 1 mission right now is "working very hard to save lives".
The NHC said hurricane-force winds extended outward 80 miles from the center of the storm and tropical storm-force winds extended almost 195 miles out.
Florence was seen as a major test for the Federal Emergency Management Agency, which was heavily criticized as slow and unprepared a year ago for Hurricane Maria in Puerto Rico, where the storm was blamed for almost 3,000 deaths in the desperate aftermath.
More than 80,000 people were already without power as the storm approached, and more than 12,000 were in shelters.
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Darnold, the youngest quarterback starter since the AFL-NFL merger in 1970, overcame a pick-6 on his first pass attempt. He was mercifully taken out midway through the fourth quarter and replaced by Matt Cassel with Detroit down 31.
He said during a reception for Congressional Medal of Honor recipients at the White House: 'We're getting tremendous accolades from politicians and the people but we are ready'.
Experts agreed that despite Florence losing some power, it was still poised to sow just as much destruction - if not more. "A storm can come and wipe your house out overnight". But the danger comes not so much from the wind as from the storm surges, which could raise the sea level to 4 meters in some points and flood the coast. Duke Energy, a power company in the Carolinas, estimated that one million to three million customers could lose electricity because of the storm and that it could take weeks to restore.
The East Coast isn't the only area facing the brunt of a storm. "If I can't get back in a week, after a while they might turn on each other or trash the place".
"On a scale of 1 to 10, I'm probably a 7" in terms of worry, she said.
"You can't get over till we have power and we have sewer up and running", said the retired teacher and real estate agent, who rode out the hurricane in an inland hotel.