Hurricane Florence may have been degraded to a tropical storm, but on Saturday afternoon it continued to unleash hell on the residents of North Carolina.
More than 24 hours after making landfall for the first time in North Carolina, the storm had stopped almost completely in the region, traveling as slowly as 2 MPH at one point.
The slow progression of the meteorological system combined with the rain of consonants and the storm surge has caused relief efforts to be delayed and families to know that they still can not return to their homes in the evacuated areas.
There were eight deaths so far in the storm, and on Saturday morning President Trump issued a disaster declaration for parts of the state that will facilitate the reconstruction process for residents in some counties.
He is planning to visit the area next week.
Demolished: the number of people without electricity in North Carolina is approaching one million, and it is likely to take weeks to restore electricity in some parts
Heart of Darkness: There have been eight deaths so far in the storm, and on Saturday morning President Trump issued a disaster declaration for parts of the state
Cleanup: Florence has degraded to a tropical storm and winds were less than 50 mph on Saturday afternoon, but the weather system was moving at 2 mph
The consequences of Florence: relief efforts are delayed and families have been told they can not return to their homes in areas evacuated due to electrical cables and fallen debris.
Waterworld: The rain brought by the storm was also reaching historic levels as of Saturday afternoon, bringing up to four feet in some areas
The mayor of Wilmington, Bill Safo, said the power could be out for weeks.
"Give us the time to clear these roads and give us the time for the power teams to come in here to start regaining power," Mayor Safo said in an interview with CBS News.
There's really no reason to go back until we do. And right now they would be on our way because we have so many debris on the road that it will take some time and we have not had the opportunity to leave because the storm has been on us for two days. "
The biggest impact according to Mayor Safo was the amount of trees felled by the storm.
"We did not think it was going to be an important wind event, but it seems that it became a big wind event for us here in the city," he explained.
– It could be weeks. Literally weeks. We have so many trees below, so much power cut everywhere.
The rain brought by the storm was also reaching historic levels as of Saturday afternoon.
"This system is unloading epic amounts of rain, in some places measured in feet and not inches," said North Carolina Governor Roy Cooper.
Devastation: Give us the time to clear these roads and give us the time for the power teams to come in here to start regaining power, "said Mayor Safo.
Intrusive: There's really no reason to come back until we do. And right now they would be on our way because we have so many debris on the road, "added Mayor Safo (a look inside the house hit by the storm)
Boat on land: "We did not think it was going to be a significant wind event, but it seems that it became a big wind event for us here in the city," explained Mayor Safo.
Twisted tables: It could be weeks. Literally weeks. We have so many fallen trees, so much power cut everywhere, "said Mayor Safo.
It begins: A look at Wilmington, North Carolina when the storm began to approach the earth on Thursday night (above)
Rescued with pets: a woman who tried to get out of the storm was one of the many rescued in New Bern on Friday (above)
The machine: the rescue personnel use a small boat while going from house to house checking the victims of the Floods in Florence
Florence's power dropped rapidly as it approached land, but the slow advance of the 300-mile storm across the region could leave much of the area underwater in the coming days.
Tens of thousands of people who were evacuated from their homes remain in shelters throughout the state after being asked to leave their homes.
It is necessary to clean and dangerous electrical cables have been knocked down in some parts of the state, especially in Wilmington.
In total, 40 inches of rain could fall in parts of North Carolina before the storm finally passes through the state.
The winds have dropped drastically, but the catastrophic flood has not improved, and the storm is moving at an icy pace.
Governor Cooper also used his comments on Saturday to warn the public that the worst is yet to come, while emphasizing the dangers residents still face even after the storm passes through the region.
"Remember that most storm deaths occur from drowning in fresh water, often in cars, do not drive standing or moving water," Governor Cooper explained.
& # 39; Please be sure and be smart and use your common sense. & # 39;
A mother and her baby were killed when a tree fell at their home in Wilmington. The injured father of the child was hospitalized.
In Pender County, a woman died of a heart attack after paramedics who tried to reach her were blocked by debris.
A 78-year-old man was electrocuted while trying to connect extension cords, while another man, 77, died when he was knocked down by strong winds while controlling his hunting dogs.
Both deaths occurred in Kinston
Officials in New Bern, dating from the early eighteenth century, said more than 100 people were rescued from the floods and that the city center was under water on Friday afternoon.
A spokesman for the city said that between 60 and 75 people expected to be rescued on Saturday.
The mayor of New Bern said that 4,200 houses were damaged in the city.
Some local residents described a heartbreaking retreat when the storm hit early on Friday.
"I was black as a wolf mouth and I was frightened of the mind," said Tracy Singleton, who along with his family drove through torrential rains and strong winds from his home near New Bern to a hotel.
Authorities in North Carolina said that almost 814,000 customers had no electricity. The figure for South Carolina was 170,000.
More than 22,600 people in North Carolina were housed in 150 shelters throughout the state, including schools, churches and the Wake Forest University basketball stadium. In South Carolina there were 7,000 people housed in shelters.