Hurricane Florence rolls ashore in Carolinas, tears buildings apart

A video showing the potential impact of Hurricane Florence is blowing people’s minds

A video showing the potential impact of Hurricane Florence is blowing people’s minds

FEMA officials wrote on Twitter people should not focus on the category of the storm - as of Thursday morning, Hurricane Florence was a Category 2 storm, indicating slower wind speeds - but rather should pay attention to the fact there will be extreme flooding in the Carolinas as a result.

Gov. Roy Cooper of the Tar Heel state announced a State of Emergency ahead of the storm making its way to the coast.

As of 5 a.m., Florence was 25 miles (55 kilometers) east of Wilmington, North Carolina.

The Wilmington Police Department said Friday that the two were killed when a tree fell on their house.

The North Carolina State Highway Patrol says that as the hurricane hit the coast overnight, officers "responded to 108 calls for service and 30 collisions". Traffic lights out of order because of power failures swayed in the gusty wind.

WXII-TV reported that 150 people were waiting to be rescued from rising waters in the city New Bern.

Tom Balance, owner of a seafood restaurant in New Bern, had decided against evacuating his home and was soon alarmed to see waves coming off the Neuse and the water getting higher and higher.

Still, he said: "I feel like the dumbest human being who ever walked the face of the earth". Its surge could cover all but a sliver of the Carolina coast under as much as 11 feet (3.4 metres) of ocean water, and days of downpours could unload more than 3 feet (0.9 metres) of rain, touching off severe flooding.

At 90 miles per hour, its wind speed was dipping but still unsafe.

One resident, 67-year-old Linda Smith, told the MailOnline: "We're a little anxious about the storm surge so we came down to see what the river is doing now". "You may need to move up to the second story, or to your attic, but WE ARE COMING TO GET YOU".

Sheets of rain splattered against windows of a hotel before daybreak in Wilmington, where Sandie Orsa of Wilmington sat in a lobby lit by emergency lights after the electricity went out.

"[It's] very eerie, the wind howling, the rain blowing sideways, debris flying", Orsa, who lives nearby and fears splintering trees will pummel her house, told The Associated Press.

More than a million people along the coastlines of North Carolina, South Carolina and Virginia have been ordered to evacuate.

Airlines canceled more than 2,100 flights through Sunday.

In Jacksonville, North Carolina, city officials posted photos of toppled gas pumps and a downed trees early Friday, warning residents to take shelter and avoid roadways.