"If you have any kinds of cuts or nicks on your leg, make sure to keep those areas very clean, and just try to avoid exposure to any of it as much as possible".
The triple punch of falling rain, rising rivers and coastal storm surges was already triggering catastrophic floods.
Three died in one inland county, Duplin, because of water on roads and flash floods, the sheriff's office said.
WILSON, N.C., Sept 15 (Reuters) - Tropical Storm Florence dumped "epic" amounts of rain on North and SC as it trudged inland on Saturday, triggering unsafe flooding, knocking out power in almost 900,000 homes and businesses, and causing at least eight deaths. Authorities expect the death toll to rise in the coming days.
A mother and baby were killed when a tree fell on a house, according to a tweet from Wilmington police. A 78-year-old man connecting extension cords in the rain was electrocuted, according to Roger Dail, the Lenoir County director of emergency services. A 61-year-old woman died Friday night when her vehicle struck a tree that fell during the storm, state emergency officials said. It's expected to move westward through SC into Sunday morning and then curve up toward North Carolina. Seventy people had to be pulled from a collapsing hotel at the height of the storm, and many more who defied evacuation orders were hoping to be rescued.More news: Oil prices rise on lower US crude inventories, looming Iran sanctions
Almost 900,000 homes and businesses were without power in the Carolinas early on Friday, utility officials said.
"The wind was so hard, the waters were so hard that, trying to get out, we got thrown into trailers".
More than 80,000 people were already without power as the storm began buffeting the coast, and more than 12,000 were in shelters.
"The water is rising fast everywhere, even in places that don't typically flood", he said.
A piece of corrugated metal blown by winds from Hurricane Florence just misses a state patrolman as people move a wood and metal structure that was blown onto the roadway, in Florence, South Carolina, on September 14, 2018.
Hurricane Florence is dumping rain on North Carolina and pushing a storm surge taller than most humans onto communities near the coast. That's enough to fill the Chesapeake Bay or cover the entire state of Texas with almost 4 inches (10 centimetres) of water, he calculated.
The small town of Hamlet in Richmond County, North Carolina, for example, is full of toxic emitters: within its borders are a chicken processing plant, an energy company and a wood pellet manufacturer that broke ground within the past few years.More news: NYSC Scandal: Kemi Adeosun ‘Resigns’ As Nigeria’s Finance Minister
By Saturday morning the winds weakened to 50mph but the storm's slow speed means that communities in North Carolina are receiving a prolonged battering by torrential rain. Hundreds of people were rescued in New Bern, North Carolina, on Friday.
Boats are stacked up on each other in a marina as a result from Florence in New Bern, North Carolina.
23 aviation rescues, and counting.
Authorities have set up 89 emergency operation centers throughout the state.
60 primary roads have been closes, with more closures expected.More news: Are Apple's New iPhones Too Big For Women's Hands?