Published On: Fri, Sep 14th, 2018

Hurricane Florence death toll: Four dead as ‘BIBLICAL’ storm batters North Carolina | World | News

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A mother and an infant were among the first known victims of the fierce .

The tragedy took place on Friday morning, when a tree fell on their house in Wilmington, New Hanover County, police said.

The city was hit with a 105 mph wind gust, the strongest wind recorded there since 1958.

The father of the child, who was also in the house, was transported to the New Hanover Regional Medical Center with injuries, police added, without releasing the names of the casualties. 

Two more people died for causes linked to the storm.

A woman living in Hampstead, an area nearby coastal Pender County, lost her life following a heart attack, officials said, without further elaborating.

It is believed she rang emergency services who were unable to reach her home due to debris and dangerous conditions.

And a fourth person died in Lenoir County while plugging in a generator, authorities added. 

Governor Roy Cooper of North Carolina said: “Our hearts go out to the families of those who died in this storm.

“Hurricane Florence is going to continue its violent grind across our state for days.

“Be extremely careful and stay alert.”

Calling the deadly storm a “thousand-year rain event”, Gov Cooper continued: “The sun rose this morning on an extremely dangerous situation and it’s getting worse.”

Wilmington Police Chief Ralph Evangelous predicted the worst is yet to come. 

He told ABC News: “I see a biblical proportion flood event that’s going to occur.

“I see the beach communities’ being inundated with water and destruction that will be pretty, pretty epic.”

hammered the Carolinas with as many as three inches of rain an hour earlier today.

But moving inland at a whopping five miles an hour, it looks set to bring more devastation. 

Forecasters warned rainfall of up to 40 inches could hit the land, triggering flash floods.

Some 300 people have already been rescued from their flooded houses overnight in New Bern, North Carolina.

The hurricane was downgraded to category 1 on Thursday, meaning its winds are at least 74 mph strong.

Florence made its landfall at approximately 12.15pm BST (7.15am local time), with winds of about 90 mph. 

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