WILMINGTON, N.C. – Slow-moving Hurricane Florence made landfall early Friday in North Carolina, bringing strong winds, heavy rain and the threat of record flooding at late-morning high-tide along the North and South Carolina coast.
The National Hurricane Center said Florence went ashore near Wrightsville Beach, North Carolina, at 7:15 a.m. EST with estimated maximum winds of 90 mph.
Forecasters warned of “catastrophic” freshwater flooding along waterways far from the coast of the Carolinas.
Seventy people had to be pulled from a collapsing hotel at the height of the storm, and many more who defied evacuation orders were hoping to be rescued.
More than 372,000 customers people were without power in North Carolina as the eye of Hurricane Florence went ashore near Wilmington and began its slow trek southward along the coast.
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