Hurricane Florence, once a Category 4 storm, was downgraded to Category 1 before it made landfall near Wrightsville Beach, North Carolina early Friday morning. But experts say that despite the apparent demotion, Hurricane Florence still stands to be a destructive and deadly storm for those in its path.
A hurricanes speed can determine how dangerous they are, as slower storms can dump biblical amounts of rain and create other hazards in a more limited area over longer periods of time. That results in people being exposed to hurricane-force winds much longer than they would otherwise have been, and that in turn effects inland flooding. Other threats, like storm surge, arent measured or predicted by a given hurricanes category either.
Hurricane categories have become a convenient shorthand for residents, officials and the media looking to understand and convey the threat a storm presents. That means people may be making ill-informed decisions about whether to evacuate their homes or ride out a hurricane and risk their lives in the process.
What category was Florence when it hit Wilmington?
Hurricane Florence made landfall near Wrightsville Beach as a Category 1 hurricane, bringing slow moving downpours that caused flooding throughout eastern North Carolina. Florence was the area’s costliest and wettest hurricane on record.
What was the worst hurricane in the world?
The deadliest Atlantic hurricane in recorded history was the Great Hurricane of 1780, which resulted in 22,000–27,501 fatalities. In recent years, the deadliest hurricane was Hurricane Mitch of 1998, with at least 11,374 deaths attributed to it.
What was the category of Hurricane Katrina?
Hurricane Katrina / Category
Has there been a hurricane Elsa?
Hurricane Elsa was the earliest hurricane in the Caribbean Sea and the earliest-forming fifth named storm on record in the Atlantic Ocean, surpassing Edouard of the previous year. It was the first hurricane of the 2021 Atlantic hurricane season.
At one point, they had warned that it might become a Category 5 hurricane. There is no classification stronger than a Category 5 (or, more colloquially, Cat 5). That means storm winds could be fast enough to cause extreme, catastrophic damage.
Wind speed can fluctuate as hurricanes travel, and storms like Florence ultimately tend to weaken as they pass over land, said Bob Henson, a meteorologist with Weather Underground. Even weaker storms can cause life-threatening flooding, cut off power for thousands of people and isolate areas for days.
The five hurricane categories are based on wind speeds and are largely meant to help predict structural damage. Its not just meteorological, said Joel Cline, a hurricane support meteorologist with the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration.
Hurricane Florence will lash the Carolinas beginning late Thursday as an intense Category 4 hurricane with life-threatening storm surge, destructive winds and massive inland rainfall flooding in one of the strongest strikes on record for this part of the East Coast.
Florence is also generating dangerous surf and rip currents along the East Coast.
Hurricane Florence was a powerful and long-lived Cape Verde hurricane that caused catastrophic damage in the Carolinas in September 2018, primarily as a result of freshwater flooding due to torrential rain. The sixth named storm, third hurricane, and the first major hurricane of the 2018 Atlantic hurricane season, Florence originated from a strong tropical wave that emerged off the west coast of Africa on August 30, 2018. The wave steadily organized, and strengthened into a tropical depression on the next day near Cape Verde. Progressing along a steady west-northwest trajectory, the system gradually strengthened, acquiring tropical storm strength on September 1. An unexpected bout of rapid intensification ensued on September 45, culminating with Florence becoming a Category 4 major hurricane on the SaffirSimpson scale (SSHWS), with estimated maximum sustained winds of 130 mph (215 km/h). Strong wind shear then led to rapid weakening, and Florence weakened to tropical storm strength on September 7. Shifting steering currents led to a westward turn into a more suitable environment; as a result, Florence reintensified to hurricane strength on September 9 and major hurricane status by the following day. Florence reached peak intensity on September 11, with 1-minute winds of 150 mph (240 km/h) and a minimum central pressure of 937 mbar (27.7 inHg). An unexpected eyewall replacement cycle and decreasing oceanic heat content caused a steady weakening trend; however, the storm grew in size at the same time. Early on September 14, Florence made landfall in the United States just south of Wrightsville Beach, North Carolina as a Category 1 hurricane, and weakened further as it slowly moved inland under the influence of weak steering currents. Florence degenerated into a post-tropical cyclone over West Virginia on September 17 and was absorbed by another frontal storm two days later.
Coupled with a powerful storm surge , the rainfall caused widespread flooding along a long stretch of the North Carolina coast, from New Bern to Wilmington . Inland flooding from Florence inundated cities such as Fayetteville , Smithfield , Lumberton , Durham , and Chapel Hill .
Most major roads and highways in the area experienced flooding, with large stretches of I-40 , I-95 , and US Route 70 remaining impassable for days after the storm’s passage.  Toward the end of August 31, the system’s convective organization became sufficient for the NHC to upgrade the disturbance to Tropical Depression Six south of Santiago in Cape Verde .  While the storm came under the steering influence of a strong subtropical ridge to the north the following day, moderate wind shear temporarily stunted development and displaced convection to the eastern side of the depression.
 Later, however, pronounced banding features developed around the circulation, prompting the NHC to upgrade the depression to Tropical Storm Florence at 0900Z on September 1. Development of a small central dense overcast and a mid-level eye feature signified Florence‘s intensification to hurricane strength early on September 4, roughly 1,240 miles (2,000 km) west-northwest of Cape Verde.  Shortly thereafter, the system unexpectedly rapidly intensified within a small area of low wind shear in an otherwise adverse upper-level environment;  the hurricane’s core structure, eye, and outer banding improved markedly, catching forecasters off-guard and intensifying beyond model outputs.
 On September 5, the tropical cyclone reached an initial peak intensity with 1-minute sustained winds of 130 mph (215 km/h) with a central pressure of 950 millibars (28 inHg), making it as a Category 4 hurricane on the SaffirSimpson scal  Thereafter, increasing wind shear caused the hurricane to rapidly weaken to tropical storm strength by September 8. Environmental conditions became increasingly conducive to reorganization on September 8 as NOAA Hurricane Hunters began reconnaissance of the cyclone, with the shear decreasing and warm waters becoming deeper. Florence reattained hurricane-status by 12:00 UTC on September 9, with the Hurricane Hunters observing 76 mph (122 km/h) sustained winds at the surface.
 Fueled by sea surface temperatures of 84 to 85 F (29 to 29.5 C), Florence rapidly reintensified overnight, and Convective bursts with frequent lightning surrounded the eyewall,  giving rise to a well-defined 12 mi (19 km) wide eye.  At this point, the future track of the hurricane became increasingly uncertain as models predicted a collapse of steering currents. On the following day, steering currents collapsed, which caused Florence to slow down greatly while moving towards the North Carolina coast.
At 11:15 UTC (7:15 a.m. EDT) on September 14, Florence made landfall just south of Wrightsville Beach, North Carolina as a Category 1 hurricane, with sustained winds of 90 mph (150 km/h) and a central pressure of 956 mbar (28.2 inHg).  Domestic airlines cancelled 20 flights on August 31 and September 1; maritime travel was also suspended for this period.  Under the threat of damaging waves, the Autoridade Nacional de Proteo Civil evacuated 125 people, primarily elderly, from Furna and Rinco .
 Tropical storm warnings were discontinued on September 1, as the system progressed westward and no longer posed a threat to the archipelago.  President Donald Trump declared an emergency in North Carolina, granting the state access to federal funds.  The South Carolina Emergency Management Division (SCEMD) and Harvest Hope Food Bank began mobilizing resources for potential recovery efforts.
 The SCEMD raised operation conditions to level 3 on September 9, and began preparations for the “possibility of a large-scale disaster”, with forecasts showing Florence striking the state as a major hurricane.  On September 10, Governor Henry McMaster ordered evacuations for the entire coastline of South Carolina,  constituting roughly 1 million people. A mandatory evacuation for visitors and tourists was issued on September 11 for Holden Beach , Oak Island , and Currituck .
Disruptive rainfall and strong winds affected Brava , Fogo , and Santiago in Cape Verde, causing some landslides and localized flooding.  Employees at ABC affiliate WCTI-TV (which serves the surrounding market that includes Greenville and Jacksonville ) were forced to evacuate its New Bern studio facility that evening due to the rising waters, with WCTI switching to a simulcast of Sinclair sister station WPDE ‘s live coverage of the storm until station staff could resume their own broadcasts. Florence made landfall in Wrightsville Beach, North Carolina on September 14, and by mid-morning rescuers had already evacuated more than 200 people from floodwaters, with about 150 more awaiting rescue.
 On September 14, about 100 civilians, city workers, and National Guard worked to fill sandbags and protect Lumberton, North Carolina from an identified weak spot that caused massive flooding during Hurricane Matthew in 2016.  By September 17, Florence had dropped a maximum total of 35.93 inches (913 mm) of rain in Elizabethtown , North Carolina, becoming the wettest tropical cyclone recorded in the state. 5-day map accumulation with Florence over the CarolinasStatewide, approximately 2,200 primary and secondary roads closed due to flooding,  including large sections of Interstates 40 and 95 .
 By the morning of September 16, Wilmington had recorded more rain from Florence than any other single weather event in the city’s history. Additionally, Florence contributed to the wettest year in Wilmington history, with annual rainfall totals eclipsing the previous record set in 1877. Woody White, New Hanover County chairman of the board of commissioners, issued a statement advising all travelers to avoid the Wilmington area.
 There was a report of looting and burglary at a Wilmington area Family Dollar , with the theft of non-essential items such as sports apparel and athletic shoes during the height of the storm. Farther south along the Waccamaw River, homes in a neighborhood in Socastee were flooded with as much as 8 ft (2.4 m) of water. The first twister touched down just north-northeast of Myrtle Beach , causing minor damage to pine trees near Route 17 before lifting after moving only about half a mile.
Strong winds downed trees and power lines, while at least one home in Nichols suffered roof damage.  A Superfund site was also damaged, causing PCB to enter homes, a toxic substance which required cleanup efforts by the Environmental Protection Agency .  In Lancaster County , flash flooding left a number of roads impassable and washed out several other streets.
However, the twister in Chesterfield County, rated EF2, damaged several buildings between Winterpock and Bon Air and destroyed a warehouse, causing one death and at least one injury. The state of Georgia experienced lesser amounts of damage, mostly from fallen trees and downed powerlines. Deaths Rip currents and rough seas in New Smyrna Beach , Florida , caused 13 rescues; one victim died at a hospital and two others had impact injuries.
 One man drowned on September 11, at Florida’s Playalinda Beach , while trying to rescue a 10-year-old boy caught in a rip current.  One child drowned in Green Swamp near Sumter , South Carolina , after water released from the Second Mill Pond flowed into the river.  An 18-wheeleraquaplaned off Interstate 85 near Kings Mountain and crashed into a tree; the vehicle tore in half, killing the driver.
 One person drowned in the swelling Cape Fear River near Cedar Creek after refusing evacuation orders.  In late September, two people were killed in North Carolina while repairing damage from Hurricane Florence to their homes, bringing the death toll in the state to 39. One woman died of unknown causes in a shelter, and two people found dead on Harkers Island were deemed victims of a murder-suicide .
 On September 18, a van was transporting two mental health patients from Horry County to Darlington ; the vehicle was swept away by swift-moving water along U.S. Route 76 the swollen Little Pee Dee River was 0.5 mi (0.80 km) from this location. Through September 18, the North Carolina Department of Agriculture stated 3.4 million chickens and turkeys and 5,500 hogs died in flooded farms. Piles of manure stored at these farms were swept into swollen rivers,  about a dozen pits holding animal waste were damaged by the flooding and debris.
In total, more than a hundred and thirty hog waste lagoons were compromised, and thirty-three overflowed to the point of discharging their contents into the Cape Fear River watershed. Media coverage of the hurricane drew comparisons with Hurricane Floyd ; Smithfield Foods , which owns many of eastern North Carolina’s hog farms, had been criticized at the time for allowing the lagoons to overflow, and had promised improvements to prevent future incidents of pollution. On September 16, approximately 5 million gallons of partially treated wastewater spilled into the Cape Fear River after a treatment plant lost power.
 An estimated 2,000 yd 3 (1,530 m 3 ) of coal ash from the closed Sutton Power Station near Wilmington was also swept into the river. Torrential rains from the storm itself, estimated at 30 inches (760 mm), also caused a swamp to spill into the cooling pond.  On September 19, the H.F. Lee Energy Complex in Goldsboro flooded to the point where their three ponds were completely underwater and began releasing coal ash into the Neuse River.
 Many rescuers were looking for local residents in need of assistance or evacuation aid, and discovered some animals in flooding cages, some attempting to seek shelter, and some stranded on porches. In the aftermath of the storm, over 40,000 workers from across the US and Canada went to the Carolinas to help restore power, according to the Edison Electric Institute . Clean up and volunteering after the storm in Pender County, NC.President Donald Trump visited North and South Carolina on September 19, and spoke to emergency workers in an airplane hangar at the Marine Corps Air Station Cherry Point .
 On September 23, the United States Congress began to deliberate a $1.7 billion aid package for the Carolinas. After two patients at a mental hospital died when the van carrying them was swept away by floods, the State Law Enforcement Division and Highway Patrol opened an investigation into the incident, and the deputies involved, who were escorting the women and were rescued from the top of the van, were placed on administrative leave .  Family members of the deceased met with South Carolina elected officials to discuss the incident and the changes that they wish to see put in place to prevent other deaths.
A number of studies assessing the effect of global climate change on the impact of Hurricane Florence were performed. Projections prior to landfall made the case that the hurricane could be up to 50% larger and 50 miles wider given the effects of anthropogenic warming. When the Associated Press reached out to seventeen meteorologists and climate scientists following the hurricane, the majority agreed that human-caused warming worsened the effects of the storm.
^ “Depresso Tropical em Cabo Verde: Famlias de Rinco e Furna Acima transferidas aps alerta da proteco civil” . “1 Million People Ordered to Evacuate South Carolina Coast as Hurricane Florence Gathers Strength” . “Justice suspends Turnpike work, lowers state park prices as part of Florence response” .
“Hurricane Florence makes landfall in North Carolina, with plenty of destruction and suffering ahead” . “Updated preliminary rainfall totals across North and South Carolina from Hurricane Florence received as of 2 p.m. EDT, on Sunday, September 16. Heavy rain continued to fall across central and western portions of North Carolina and Virginia” (Tweet).
Attached are the new graphic and one from the wettest known system in SC history – an extratropical cyclone from Oct 2015 NW of Joaquin” (Tweet). “Florence regains hurricane force, forecast to hit Southeast coast as a major storm” . “Florence flood kills 2 mental health patients when Horry sheriff van is overcome: report” .
“Sheriff’s deputies transporting 2 mental health patients who drowned in flood waters put on leave, authorities say” . ^ “Louisa man killed in flash flood; Chesterfield tornado victim died while helping co-workers escape” . ^ “East Tennessee animal centers give shelter to dogs, cats displaced by Hurricane Florence” .
The issues prompted North Carolina to tell drivers coming down Interstate 95 from Virginia to go aroundthe entire state. 10 days after Hurricane Florence touched down, Interstate 95 through North Carolina is now reopened to all traffic.
Where did the scale come from?
The five hurricane categories are based on wind speeds and are largely meant to help predict structural damage. “It’s not just meteorological,” said Joel Cline, a hurricane support meteorologist with the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration. “It’s more of an impact-based scale.”Herbert Saffir, a structural engineer, created the scale in 1969. It was expanded with help from Robert Simpson, a former director of the National Hurricane Center, and it became known as the Saffir-Simpson scale in the 1970s. The ranking system once took several factors into consideration, including storm surges and atmospheric pressure. But in 2010, a tighter focus on wind speeds went into effect.Today, a Category 1 storm is one with sustained winds of 74 to 95 miles per hour, while a Category 5 storm has sustained wind speeds of 157 m.p.h. or more.
Early in the storm’s history, the system brought squalls to the Cape Verde islands, resulting in minor landslides and flooding; however, overall effects remained negligible. With the threat of a major impact in the Southeastern and Mid-Atlantic United States becoming evident by September 7, the governors of North Carolina, South Carolina, Virginia, Georgia, and Maryland, and the mayor of Washington, D.C. declared a state of emergency. On September 10 and 11, the states of North Carolina, South Carolina, and Virginia issued mandatory evacuation orders for some of their coastal communities, predicting that emergency personnel would be unable to reach people there once the storm arrived. Though Florence made landfall as a greatly weakened Category 1 hurricane, winds associated with the tropical cyclone were strong enough to uproot trees and power lines, causing extensive power outages across the Carolinas. Furthermore, due to the slow motion of the storm, heavy rain fell throughout the Carolinas for several days. Coupled with a powerful storm surge, the rainfall caused widespread flooding along a long stretch of the North Carolina coast, from New Bern to Wilmington. Inland flooding from Florence inundated cities such as Fayetteville, Smithfield, Lumberton, Durham, and Chapel Hill. Most major roads and highways in the area experienced flooding, with large stretches of I-40, I-95, and US Route 70 remaining impassable for days after the storm’s passage. Wilmington was cut off entirely from the rest of the mainland by the flooding. The storm also spawned tornadoes in several places along its path. Many places received record-breaking rainfall, with Florence setting maximum rainfall records from a tropical cyclone in both of the Carolinas.
On August 28, 2018, the National Hurricane Center (NHC) began monitoring a tropical wave—an elongated trough of low air pressure—over Western Africa for possible tropical cyclogenesis within the subsequent five days.Development of a small central dense overcast and a mid-level eye feature signified Florence‘s intensification to hurricane strength early on September 4, roughly 1,240 miles (2,000 km) west-northwest of Cape Verde.Environmental conditions became increasingly conducive to reorganization on September 8 as NOAA Hurricane Hunters began reconnaissance of the cyclone, with the shear decreasing and warm waters becoming deeper.Steady weakening continued as the hurricane approached North Carolina, and Florence fell below major hurricane status late on September 12. On the following day, steering currents collapsed, which caused Florence to slow down greatly while moving towards the North Carolina coast. At 11:15 UTC (7:15 a.m. EDT) on September 14, Florence made landfall just south of Wrightsville Beach, North Carolina as a Category 1 hurricane, with sustained winds of 90 mph (150 km/h) and a central pressure of 956 mbar (28.2 inHg). The hurricane’s sluggish movement resulted in widespread, catastrophic rainfall throughout North and South Carolina. After making landfall, the tropical cyclone began to rapidly weaken due to the frictional effects of land, and Florence weakened to a tropical depression on September 16 before transitioning into an extratropical cyclone the following day. Florence‘s remnant low dissipated over Massachusetts on September 18.
Cape Verde and Bermuda
Upon the designation of Potential Tropical Cyclone Six on August 30, the government of Cape Verde issued tropical storm warnings for the islands of Brava, Fogo, and Santiago.In anticipation of adverse conditions, Norwegian Cruise Lines and Oceania Cruises adjusted itineraries for
As forecast models indicated an increasing threat to the Southeastern United States, North Carolina Governor Roy Cooper declared a state of emergency on September 7. Transportation rules for farmers were waived to enable faster harvesting.South Carolina Governor Henry McMaster followed suit on the next day.On September 8, Virginia Governor Ralph Northam also declared a state of emergency.
President Donald Trump, September 11, 2018, White House press briefingMandatory evacuation orders for residents and tourists on Hatteras Island in Dare County began on September 10, with orders expanding to the rest of the county the following day.In North Carolina, mandatory evacuations were issued on September 11 for Brunswick County, Carteret County, Craven County, Onslow County, Pamlico County, Tyrrell County, North Topsail Beach, Emerald Isle, Ocracoke Island, Atlantic Beach, Indian Beach, Kure Beach, Pine Knoll Shores, and Wrightsville Beach. A mandatory evacuation for visitors and tourists was issued on September 11 for Holden Beach, Oak Island, and Currituck. Voluntary evacuations were issued for Bertie County, Beaufort County, and Surf City.The University of North Carolina at Wilmington issued a mandatory evacuation effective on September 10.In South Carolina, in 26 eastern counties, public schools were closed until further notice beginning on September 10. State offices in these counties were also ordered closed, while county-level officials could decide when to close their offices.Atlanta Motor Speedway, Bristol Motor Speedway, Charlotte Motor Speedway and Talladega Superspeedway opened their campgrounds to evacuees of Hurricane Florence free of charge.
Cape Verde and Bermuda
Disruptive rainfall and strong winds affected Brava, Fogo, and Santiago in Cape Verde, causing some landslides and localized flooding. Impacts from the storm were otherwise minimal, with no material damage reported.Large swells and rip currents from the storm reached Bermuda on September 7.
In Wrightsville Beach, North Carolina, 27 people required lifeguard rescue between September 8 and 9.Florence‘s flooding in North Carolina and Virginia was compounded by earlier flooding during the summer that left the ground heavily saturated.Florence made landfall in Wrightsville Beach, North Carolina on September 14, and by mid-morning rescuers had already evacuated more than 200 people from floodwaters, with about 150 more awaiting rescue. The storm had reportedly cut power to more than 500,000 customers in North and South Carolina by the time of landfall and caused the roof of a hotel in Jacksonville, North Carolina to collapse that morning.Heavy rains continued to affect the Carolinas after landfall. A weather station in Swansboro, North Carolina, recorded 33.90 inches (861 mm) of rain, establishing a new record for a tropical cyclone in that state.Statewide, approximately 2,200 primary and secondary roads closed due to flooding,Strong winds in New Hanover County toppled numerous trees and power lines, while more than 90% of the county was left without electricity. The storm dropped up to 27.2 in (690 mm) of rain near Kings Grant.Early on September 17, a tornado was confirmed in Elm City, North Carolina.Also on September 17, the Pee Dee River crested at Ansonville at 35.4 ft (10.8 m), 2 ft (0.61 m) above the 1945 record.The Cape Fear River crested at 61.4 ft (18.7 m)—about 35 ft (11 m) above flood stage—near Fayetteville early on September 19. The magnitude of flooding greatly exceeded the levels observed due to Hurricane Matthew in 2016. The nearby Little River inundated large areas across Cumberland and Harnett counties. Overtopped bridges isolated communities and hampered relief efforts.Damage statewide reached an estimated US$17 billion, more than the combined damage of Hurricane Floyd and Hurricane Matthew in the state, according to Governor Roy Cooper.
Heavy rainfall also occurred in South Carolina, with 23.63 in (600 mm) of precipitation observed near Loris, setting a new state record for rainfall from a tropical cyclone.Flooding was also reported in Marion County, especially in Brittons Neck and Gresham. A number of people evacuated and were still not able to access their homes by October 1. In Nichols, flooding damaged about 150 homes which had been rebuilt after Hurricane Matthew. Strong winds downed trees and power lines, while at least one home in Nichols suffered roof damage. Approximately 400 homes in Dillon County were flooded. A total of 21 homes in Darlington County received severe flood damage, while another home was destroyed.In Chesterfield County, the Pee Dee River crested at 46.51 ft (14.18 m) at Cheraw. Three nearby dams failed, causing significant flooding in Cheraw and the town of Chesterfield. Many roads became impassable or were washed out. A total of 226 homes were damaged and other 2 were destroyed.
The storm spawned 10 tornadoes in Virginia, including 2 in Chesterfield County, 1 in Hanover County, 1 in Mecklenberg County, 1 in Powhatan County, and 5 in Richmond. Most of these tornadoes caused little damage other than downed trees, tree limbs, or electrical poles. However, the twister in Chesterfield County, rated EF2, damaged several buildings between Winterpock and Bon Air and destroyed a warehouse, causing one death and at least one injury. The tornado in Mecklenburg County, rated EF0, touched down between Boydton and Skipwith. Extensive tree damaged was reported, with several homes and outbuildings damaged by falling trees.The state of Georgia experienced lesser amounts of damage, mostly from fallen trees and downed powerlines. Damage in Georgia totaled $30 million.Large swells ahead of the hurricane reached Assateague State Park, Maryland, by September 9, prompting the Maryland Department of Natural Resources to close beach access indefinitely.
Rip currents and rough seas in New Smyrna Beach, Florida, caused 13 rescues; one victim died at a hospital and two others had impact injuries.Two people in North Carolina died while trying to evacuate: one in Columbus County and Wayne County.Three deaths originally attributed to the hurricane were later considered unrelated. One woman died of unknown causes in a shelter, and two people found dead on Harkers Island were deemed victims of a murder-suicide.Two people died of carbon monoxide poisoning in Loris, South Carolina. A vehicle with three occupants lost control on a flooded road in Georgetown County; one passenger died, while the driver and other passenger escaped. A woman died when her vehicle crashed into a downed tree near Union.On September 17, ten tornadoes of strengths between EF0 and EF2One 69-year-old man in Robeson County, North Carolina whose house was damaged apparently committed suicide.
Agriculture and environmental effects
The large-scale flooding affected swaths of North Carolina’s agricultural industry and proved particularly damaging to livestock. Through September 18, the North Carolina Department of Agriculture stated 3.4 million chickens and turkeys and 5,500 hogs died in flooded farms. Dozens of farms remained isolated with animals unable to be fed. Piles of manure stored at these farms were swept into swollen rivers,In total, more than a hundred and thirty hog waste lagoons were compromised, and thirty-three overflowed to the point of discharging their contents into the Cape Fear River watershed. Media coverage of the hurricane drew comparisons with Hurricane Floyd; Smithfield Foods, which owns many of eastern North Carolina’s hog farms, had been criticized at the time for allowing the lagoons to overflow, and had promised improvements to prevent future incidents of pollution.On September 16, approximately 5 million gallons of partially treated wastewater spilled into the Cape Fear River after a treatment plant lost power.
Domestic and zoo animals
During and after the storm made landfall, local rescuers and nationwide donors and organizations worked to aid the many pets that had been left by their owners, or alongside their owners.Zoo animals such as those from the Virginia Zoo were sheltered within indoor and sheltered portions of their enclosures.
On September 19, after the rain had stopped, a majority of evacuees were urged by officials to stay away from their homes as the rivers continued to rise; the potential threat of floods remained high, roads remained closed, and thousands lacked power to their homes.
In the aftermath of the storm, over 40,000 workers from across the US and Canada went to the Carolinas to help restore power, according to the Edison Electric Institute.
The continued flooding closed many major roads for days after the incident. On September 15, NCDOT asked drivers to avoid driving in North Carolina altogether, instructing them to take a detour at Richmond, Virginia using Interstate 64 west to Interstate 81 south into Tennessee to Interstate 40 west to Interstate 75 south into Georgia to Interstate 16 east back to Interstate 95.
President Donald Trump visited North and South Carolina on September 19, and spoke to emergency workers in an airplane hangar at the Marine Corps Air Station Cherry Point.
After two patients at a mental hospital died when the van carrying them was swept away by floods, the State Law Enforcement Division and Highway Patrol opened an investigation into the incident, and the deputies involved, who were escorting the women and were rescued from the top of the van, were placed on administrative leave.
Connection to climate change
A number of studies assessing the effect of global climate change on the impact of Hurricane Florence were performed. Projections prior to landfall made the case that the hurricane could be up to 50% larger and 50 miles wider given the effects of anthropogenic warming. However, actual conditions at the time of landfall were less severe, so analyses after the hurricane indicate that warming led to an increase in total rainfall of around 5% and an increase in diameter of around 1.5 miles.
Due to the damage and loss of life in the Carolinas, the name