Forecasters say Florence is now a tropical storm but will continue to threaten North and South Carolina with powerful winds and catastrophic freshwater flooding.
Florence slammed the Carolina coast Friday as a hurricane when it made landfall at approximately 7:40 a.m., bringing the threat of absolute chaos with it.
NBC10 Boston meteorologist Chris Gloninger braved the fierce 90 mph winds Friday brought by Category 1 Florence.
Already the storm has caused significant flooding near the coast and made 300,000 residents in the state to lose power. As it battered the coast, Florence’s unforgiving winds lashed at structures and caused at least one gas station canopy to topple over and collapse.
A major transformer exploded near Gloninger’s location in Wilmington. Forecasters warn that "catastrophic" freshwater flooding is expected.
At the storm’s peak, it was announced as a Category 4 on Wednesday and gradually decreased as it approached the coast. However, its lowered category does not mean residents are safe to return to their homes.
Mandatory evacuations were issued Tuesday for 1.7 million residents in the Carolinas and Virginia. North Carolina Gov. Roy Cooper warned of an impending disaster.
Historic amounts of rain are expected to fall as a result of Florence. An expert at the North Carolina Emergency Management says storm surge alone is expected to floods tens of thousands of structures.