WASHINGTON – The winds, floods and rains generated by hurricane Florence has claimed at least 31 lives in North Carolina and South Carolina, local media reported on Monday, citing official sources.
Of the 31 fatalities, six died in South Carolina and the other 25 in North Carolina.
Several people died of drowning, other were involved in traffic accidents, and some were killed by trees that fell on their houses, including two children in separate incidents.
Hundreds of thousands of people had to abandon their homes, thousands had to be evacuated and some 500,000 remain without electricity.
According to data published on Monday by the National Hurricane Center (NHC), Florence is moving away from the two affected states at a speed of 22 kilometers per hour after causing heavy rainfall in the area over the entire weekend.
“This is a monumental disaster for our state,” North Carolina Governor Roy Cooper said on Monday. “This is an epic storm that is still continuing because the rivers are still rising.”
The National Weather Service also warned of “historical and catastrophic river flooding” in the coming days.