Local and State Headlines for Monday, September 17, 2018

Florence Death Toll Rises (Undated)

At least 16 people are dead from Florence.  The storm is still bringing heavy rain to the Carolinas, Tennessee, Kentucky and Virginia.  Ten of those killed were in North Carolina, while at least six died in South Carolina.  Now that the worst of the winds and storm surge are past, flooding is the main concern.  Officials are warning of possibly historic flooding in North and South Carolina as heavy rain continues to fill rivers to their brims. 

Flash Flood Watch In WNC (Asheville, NC)

A bulk of western North Carolina remains in a flash flood watch.  The National Weather Service says several more inches of rain could fall before midnight tonight.  Isolated landslides are also possible.  The DOT has been closely monitoring a site on Highway Nine in Henderson County that has been under repair all summer.  Crews are staged in the Bat Cave area for quick response in case landslides block the road.           

More Evacuations May Be Necessary As Rivers Rise (Raleigh, NC)

Governor Roy Cooper is warning that mandatory evacuations may be necessary in some parts of the state as river levels continue to rise.  Some residents were told to evacuate last night in Ashe County, as the National Weather Service said Headwaters Dam in Creston was in danger of being breached.   First responders have saved over 900 lives of people trapped in flood waters so far.  The Citizen-Times reported that as many as 15-thousand people were in shelters as of Sunday. 

Half-A-Million Without Power In North Carolina (Undated)

Close to 500-thousand remain without power in North Carolina.  Only scattered outages have been reported in western North Carolina, while a bulk of those without electricity are in the eastern half of the state.  Around 20-thousand customers in South Carolina are still in the dark.    

Schools Delay Opening, Some Closed (Buncombe County, NC)

Many school districts in western North Carolina are in a two-hour delay for opening today, while some are closed completely.  Those opening later include Buncombe, Henderson, Haywood and McDowell counties.  Yancey County schools are completely closed for the day.  Widespread flooding caused the sheriff's office to enforce a curfew overnight in Yancey, where a reported 30 roads were impassable.   

World Equestrian Games Back On Schedule (Tryon, NC)

The World Equestrian Games are scheduled to resume this morning in Tryon, despite uncertainty about the effects from the weather.  Sunday was a complete wash at the world's largest horse competition.  The annual North Carolina Mountain State Fair wrapped up a day early on Saturday due to Hurricane Florence.      

North Carolina Governor Roy Cooper Speaks On Threat Levels (Raleigh, NC)

Rising floodwaters could be deadly in the aftermath of Hurricane Florence.  Governor Roy Cooper says the storm has never presented a greater level of danger than what is being presented right now, and they are working to find a pathway to places that need help.  Rivers all across North Carolina are still rising and haven't crested yet.  First responders have reportedly saved over 900 lives of people trapped in flood waters so far.

Emergency Crews Looking For One-Year-Old (Union County, NC)

A one-year-old swept away in flood waters is missing.  NBC Charlotte says a woman was driving on Highway 218 in Union County when her car was taken off the road.  Her child was swept out of the car and couldn't be found.  First responders had to be rescued when an ambulance got stuck.    

Charlotte Area Remains In Flash Flood Watch (Charlotte, NC)

The Charlotte area remains under a flash flood watch as rivers across the state still threaten to rise.  The major rain bands that wreaked havoc in the Piedmont over the weekend have now moved out, although the threat of some storms still exists.  Some portions of Mecklenburg and Union counties received close to a foot of rain over the weekend.  

Fallen Tree Kills Gaston County Baby (Gaston County, NC)

A three-month-old in Gaston County is one of at least 16 who have died from the effects of Florence.  A county commissioner revealed on Facebook that a tree fell on the family's mobile home in Dallas early Sunday afternoon.  The mother was reportedly holding the child when the tree fell.  She was taken to the hospital in stable condition.  

Train Derails In Anson County (Anson County, NC)

Anson County officials say a train derailed near Highway 74 last night.  WSOC-TV is reporting that heavy rain and flooding may have played a part in the accident.  Several train conductors were taken to the hospital with minor injuries after three locomotives overturned.  The DOT is investigating.    

Coach:  Run Defense Terrible In Panthers Loss (Atlanta, GA)

Panthers' head coach Ron Rivera says Carolina's run defense was terrible in Sunday's 31-24 loss to Atlanta.  Falcons running back Tevin Coleman became the first player to rush for more than 100 yards against the Panthers in 22 games.  Carolina came up just short on a last minute drive after rallying with two fourth quarter touchdowns.  The Panthers next host Cincinnati on Sunday.

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