More flooding expected as lakes, rivers rise
Posted October 1, 2010 1:41 p.m. EDT
Updated October 2, 2010 12:10 a.m. EDT
Raleigh, N.C. — Flooding could persist in eastern North Carolina through the weekend as already-swollen rivers, creeks and lakes continue to rise after a five-day stretch of rain that was
Flooding could persist in eastern North Carolina through the weekend as already-swollen rivers, creeks and lakes continue to rise after a five-day stretch of rain that was capped by a massive storm Thursday.
Flood warnings remained in effect Friday evening for about a dozen coastal and eastern counties until Saturday or Sunday. The Neuse River in Goldsboro is expected to reach flood stage Saturday and stay close to flood stage through Tuesday.
"It will be some days before we see these rivers crest and then start to go down," WRAL meteorologist Mike Maze said Friday. "We may not see the worst of it until tomorrow or even Sunday."
In hard-hit Bertie County, where 4.5 feet of water covered Windsor, the Cashie River had risen to 15.69 feet Friday, nearly double its flood stage of 8 feet. The river wasn't expected to dip below that level before early Sunday afternoon.
Evacuations could be ordered as the Cape Fear River continues to rise above flood stage near Chinquapin in Duplin County. At 16 feet, the river could flood homes on the river and N.C. Highway 41. Tributaries, including Muddy and Cypress creeks, could back up for miles away from the river.
The Trent River was fast approaching levels at which it could cover the N.C. Highway 17 bridge at Pollocksville in Jones County. The river at 11.7 feet – less than two feet away from levels at which numerous homes near the river will be flooded.
High tides and onshore winds could cause flooding on the Cape Fear River in downtown Wilmington through Friday night.
The Lumber River was threatening to rise and cause flooding through Wednesday morning. At 16 feet, the river would flood and force evacuations from some residences in The Pines and Cox's Pond area.
Minor to moderate flooding is also possible along:
- The Cape Fear River in Bladen County and near Burgaw in Pender County
- Swift Creek in Craven County.
- The Neuse River at Smithfield in Johnston County, Goldsboro in Wayne County, Kinston in Lenoir County and Fort Barnwell in Craven County.
- The New River at Gum Branch in Onslow County.
- Contentnea Creek in Wilson County and near Hookerton in Green County.
- Chicod Creek near Simpson in Pitt County.
The rising water levels are being pushed by the large amounts of rain dumped on North Carolina from Sunday to Thursday of this week.
Thursday's storm system capped off the rainiest five days in Wilmington on record since 1871. The city received 22.54 inches of rain, besting the record set by Hurricane Floyd in 1999.
In the same period, Swansboro got 21.65 inches of rain, Williamston 19.1 inches, New Bern 18.83 inches, Washington 16.03 inches, Kinston 14.75 inches and Edenton 13.7 inches.
“The one good thing about this is that we had a dry September,” said Charles Newman, deputy emergency management director for Pender County. “If it had been a wet month, we’d be looking at a lot more destruction.”