By: Jade Edwards
The hurricane by the name of Florence hit along the East Coast of the United States, primarily in the Carolinas, Friday, September 14. Florence transpired from a tropical wave off the African coast of the Atlantic on August 30. It started to become a tropical storm on September 1, and was classified as a Category 4 hurricane by September 4-5. From the beginning, the strength of the storm fluctuated; nevertheless, precautions were taken weeks in advance of its landfall.
The governors of both North and South Carolina, Roy Cooper and Henry McMaster, called for an evacuation of areas close to the coast and on Hatteras Island. On September 7, Governor Cooper proclaimed a state of emergency. Though completely uprooting was very difficult for many people with pets, large families, and low-income jobs, it was definitely better to be safe than sorry and to follow the call to “get out.”
Waters rose and flooding began September 13. As much as 40 inches of water was expected to cover the grounds of entire counties in the Carolinas. The floods created many problems including damage to entire communities, trapped families and individuals, exposure to a mix of garbage and pollutants floating in floodwaters, wildlife being displaced, and other hidden dangers lurking throughout the water.
Because of the flooding, many casualties have occurred. As of September 19, at least 37 people are dead, 27 died in North Carolina, 8 in South Carolina, and 2 in Virginia. These deaths resulted from drowning, impact on houses, vulnerability to illness caused by bacteria in the water, and even loose electrical wires. The people were advised not to return home until some of the flooding cleared and some of the damage repaired.