Florence, 6:45 am Monday: Cape Fear rising; flooding, tornadoes threaten

By: Chrysta Carroll and Alan Wooten - Bladen Journal

ELIZABETHTOWN — All of Bladen County is within a flash flood warning issued by the National Weather Service this morning, the Cape Fear River is rising and tornadoes have begun to threaten people in eastern and southeastern North Carolina in the aftermath of Hurricane Florence.

The flash flood warning stretches from Red Springs and Robeson County to the coast from Hampstead to Pawley’s Island, South Carolina. It is scheduled to expire at 10:30 a.m.

Eastern and southeastern North Carolina had several tornado warnings overnight. A tornado was confirmed southeast of Pikeville about 6 a.m. by the weather service.

A flood warning stretched from Anson County to Sampson County, just north of a line that included Robeson and Bladen counties. That was to expire at 12:15 p.m.

Bladen County is expected to start seeing cresting of the Cape Fear River in the next 24 hours, starting on the northern end of the county. The timing of when it crests as it makes its way past Elizabethtown and into the Kelly area could last until Thursday, according to the National Weather Service predictions.

The river at the Huske lock near Tar Heel and the Cumberland County line was measured at 60.75 feet at 5 a.m. Monday morning, with a projection of 66.3 feet on Tuesday. Flood stage is 42 feet. The record is 75.5 feet in 1945; after Hurricane Matthew it hit 68.46 feet.

The river at the Elizabethtown measuring point was checked at 35.45 feet at 5:45 a.m. Monday, with a projection of 37.6 feet on Thursday. Flood stage is 25 feet. The record is 43.2 feet in 1945. After Matthew, it hit 36.44 feet.

Evacuations were ordered Sunday morning for residents in the Kelly area near the river, and on Saturday evening for residents in the Tar Heel area near the river.

Chrysta Carroll and Alan Wooten

Bladen Journal

Chrysta Carroll can be reached at 910-862-4163 or ccarroll@bladenjournal.com. Alan Wooten can be reached at 910-247-9132 or awooten@bladenjournal.com.

Chrysta Carroll can be reached at 910-862-4163 or ccarroll@bladenjournal.com. Alan Wooten can be reached at 910-247-9132 or awooten@bladenjournal.com.