With as many as 150 people trapped in their homes overnight, some who were advised to climb to their roofs, New Bern’s hopes turned to outside help from a brutal storm surge caused by Hurricane Florence.
City officials declared a 24-hour curfew due to continuing flooding, continuing until 7 a.m. Saturday.
Volunteers from the Louisiana Cajun Navy were en route to New Bern, as other rescuers, power crews, military resources and emergency supplies were made ready to come to New Bern’s assistance.
Flooding was severe in River Bend, Fairfield Harbour and Bridgeton as well. No word from Pamlico County, which is particularly disturbing given its vulnerability to flooding.
Power was out throughout New Bern, with 21,021 customers affected — virtually the whole city. An examination of the city outage map showed no areas that were unaffected.
The New Bern Police Department moved operations from its headquarters at Queen and George streets to CarolinaEast Medical Center.
Local elected officials spent the night making desperate calls for help from state lawmakers, who said help was on the way.
Meanwhile, New Bern faces several more hours of tropical storm force winds and torrential rain as Florence moves slowly to the southwest. Landfall somewhere up coast of Wilmington was expected at any moment Friday morning.