State officials in North Carolina yesterday confirmed further weather-related fatalities since Hurricane Matthew brought torrential rain and strong winds to parts of the state last week.
Fatalities were reported in Columbus County, one in Wayne County and two more in Robeson County, bringing the total number of deaths in North Carolina to 18. One person is still reported as missing.
Also yesterday, North Carolina Governor Pat McCrory provided an update on the impact of Hurricane Matthew and how the state is prepared to respond to the storm’s devastation.
“Our state continues to make progress responding to the devastation from Hurricane Matthew but dangerous conditions persist,” said Governor McCrory. “We will continue doing everything possible to fight for all available resources to help people recover.”
The greatest threat remains inland flooding that will continue into this week in central and eastern North Carolina. The governor highlighted that the Tar River near Greenville will crest tomorrow and the Neuse River near Kinston will crest on Saturday. There is also major additional flooding predicted for towns and cities along the Lumber and Cape Fear rivers, along with many other rivers and creeks.
A mandatory evacuation is in effect in Moore County for residents near Woodlake Dam. Evacuations are also in place in several other counties.
To date, more than 2,000 people have been rescued by swift water rescue teams and more are expected throughout the day. People in central and eastern North Carolina remain under a flood watch or warning.
The North Carolina National Guard has activated more than 1,000 troops, to assist with recovery efforts. There are also 400 high water and rescue vehicles which have been activated. The U.S. Coast Guard continues to assist with rescues. The National Guard, State Highway Patrol and U.S. Coast Guard have increased aviation assets and completed more than 90 air rescues.