Areas along the country’s southeast coast affected by Hurricane Matthew may have to endure days of flooding.
Although Matthew, which until now has been responsible for numerous deaths, progressed towards the sea on Sunday, there is still uncertainty as to what may come next. Flooding and rising waters are being anticipated in areas heavily affected by severe weather.
Hurricane Matthew: Casualty toll “expected to rise”
Portions of Interstates 95 and 40 remain closed on Sunday. North Carolina Governor Pat McCrory said more flooding is possible in areas along the rivers in the eastern part of the state. In all, nine people have died in the state as a result of extreme weather – a casualty toll that McCrory said is “expected to rise” – and 100 others have been rescued from the rising waters.
Also read: Hurricane Matthew Florida: Hillary Clinton And Donald Trump Agree On Something… Well Almost!
“This is still an extremely dangerous situation,” McCrory said. “We will not see the rivers peak possibly until Monday and Tuesday. Our models show very, very dangerous conditions as those rivers go over their edges.”
As reported by the New York Times, the state also saw more than 3,000 people seeking refuge in shelters while around 770,000 homes and businesses experienced power outages. According to the National Weather Service, majority of river gauges in eastern North Carolina showed heavy flooding.
USA Today reports that Cape Fear River near Burgaw, Tar River at Greenville and Cashie River near Windsor had either neared or touched the flood stage.
South Carolina was hit by the effects of the severe weather as well. Governor Nikki Haley has ordered evacuations for two counties; at the same time allowing people to return to Charleston and its neighboring areas.
Other than flooding, downed power lines and trees were reported by the fire department in Virginia Beach. The Virginia National Guard has deployed more than 150 personnel with high water vehicles and debris teams to assist in rescue efforts.
In a statement, Virginia Governor Terry MccAuliffe said, “As anticipated, we have had some impacts from the storm and I have directed our state agencies to make every resource available to local authorities as they respond to floods and power outages, particularly in the Hampton Roads area. As our response continues, I urge Virginians in affected areas to monitor local reports and limit unnecessary travel so responders can do their jobs quickly.”
Six localities – Hampton, Norfolk, Newport News, Virginia Beach, Middlesex Count and Portsmouth – have been declared emergencies.
Hurricane Matthew: 900 people dead in Haiti as a result of extreme weather
While the United States has been drastically affected by Hurricane Matthew, the worst hit country was Haiti where as many as 900 people have been reportedly killed as a result of the storm, ABC News reports. Officials fear the extreme weather could cause the spread of cholera.