‘Treacherous floodwaters remain,’ Cooper says one week after Florence
Gov. Roy Cooper said Saturday that North Carolina is still trying to recover from Hurricane Florence, one week after the monster storm drenched and flooded parts of the coastline and southeastern parts of the state.
“The storm itself is gone but its treacherous floodwaters remain,” Cooper said during the Saturday morning briefing. “If you live in southeastern North Carolina, don’t let your guard down.”
As of Saturday, Cooper said:
Florence came ashore last Friday as a Category 1 storm and slowly made its way across the coastline and the southeastern region of the Tar Heel State before moving into South Carolina. The storm dropped 3 feet of rain in some parts of North Carolina, which experienced the worst of the storm.
Several southeastern sections of the state are still underwater as rivers continue to crest.
The Trump administration has declared a disaster in parts of the state, making it easier for federal funding to flow into North Carolina for recovery efforts.
“So many people in our state are still hurting,” said Cooper, who has toured some the areas that were hardest hit by the storm. He said he plans to travel to Brunswick and Columbus counties later today by air and ground to see more devastation brought by the storm.
“Everywhere I go, I see the pain — the pain of ruined crops, ravaged homes and flooded towns,” Cooper said. “But I also see the hope and the hard work of recovery starting. North Carolinians are strong, and together we will rebuild our state.”
Mike Sprayberry, director of the state’s emergency management office, said at the Saturday news conference that several rivers continue to flood, including the Cape Fear River in Pender County and the Lumber River in Robeson County.
Sprayberry said the county has activated 10 kitchens in several areas, including Wilmington, Jacksonville, Hope Mills, Lumberton, and Washington, to provide hot meals to those affected by Florence.
State officials said during the press conference that 114 primary roads around the state remain closed and 540 secondary roads are closed because of Florence. Crews are working to identify and collect debris from roads that are impacting travel for motorists.
“Please heed the safety messages,” said state Highway Patrol Col. Glenn McNeill, who oversee the agency’s troopers.