Florence's dangerous 'flooding is only going to get worse,' officials warn

The massive Tropical Storm Florence was being blamed Saturday for at least 11 deaths as it continued its slog west over the Carolinas, flooding roads and homes, downing trees and power lines and sending thousands to shelters.
More than 400 people were were rescued from floodwaters in New Bern, North Carolina, and officials warned that the flooding risk was not over. Rivers in North Carolina could crest as late as Wednesday, said Gov. Roy Cooper.
"More people now face imminent threat than when the storm was just offshore," Cooper said. "I cannot overstate it: Floodwaters are rising, and if you aren’t watching for them, you are risking your life — even in places that don't typically flood."


The U.S. Coast Guard said that 20 to 30 people were rescued Saturday from a subdivision near Jacksonville, North Carolina. Kevin Futrell, a 43-year-old glass cutter who used a boat to help people escape the flooded River Hills subdivision, said he could see "the fear in their eyes." His boat struggled in the strong currents.
"My boat stalled twice and I could definitely see the people in my boat were worried," Futrell said. "I knew I had someone else's life in my hands." He got around 15 people to higher ground near his sister's house, and about three of them were airlifted by the Coast Guard for medical issues.
In New Bern, north of Wilmington, Tonya Moore, 34, evacuated with her family before the then-hurricane hit. She was able to walk back to their home Saturday to retrieve their car, blankets, food, water and clothing. She said she doesn’t know how her neighborhood in the town of 29,000 will be able to rebuild.
"I don't see how possible it is," she said in a phone interview with NBC News on Saturday. “There's a lot of damage. It's horrible. It's so sad."
Moore said she saw trees down on top of houses and cars, and saw neighbors trying to remove debris and water from their homes.
 North Carolina is bracing for what could be the next stage of the still-unfolding disaster: widespread, catastrophic river flooding from Florence.
After blowing ashore as a hurricane with 90 mph (145 kph) winds, Florence virtually parked itself much of the weekend atop the Carolinas as it pulled warm water from the ocean and hurled it onshore. Storm surges, flash floods and winds have spread destruction widely and the Marines, the Coast Guard and volunteers have used boats, helicopters, and heavy-duty vehicles to conduct hundreds of rescues as of Saturday.
The death toll from the hurricane-turned-tropical storm has now climbed to 11.
Rivers are swelling toward record levels, forecaster warn, and thousands of people have been ordered to evacuate for fear that the next few days could bring some of the most destructive flooding in North Carolina history.