RALEIGH, N.C. — The Latest on the impact of Hurricane Matthew in North Carolina (all times local):
East Carolina University’s football team had an arduous journey back to Greenville after its game with the University of South Florida in Tampa.
Pirate IMG Network engineer David Horn said Sunday the team was scheduled to fly back to Greenville after the game on Saturday, but the effects of Hurricane Matthew prevented the team from landing their charter at Pitt-Greenville Airport. Instead, the plane was diverted to Richmond, Virginia.
From Richmond, the team was planning to travel by bus to Greenville. Because Interstate 95 was closed near Roanoke Rapids, the team traveled there by bus and checked into local motels by midnight. The buses then took the team back to Greenville, where people associated with the team went to retrieve cars left there during the trip.
Emergency officials say a 63-year-old woman clung to a tree for three hours after floodwaters from Hurricane Matthew swept her car into a canal in Wilson.
Wilson County Emergency Management Director Gordon Deno says the woman was on her way home from work at a long-term care facility where she’s a nurse or a nursing assistant. She left about 11:30 p.m. Saturday, and her family called 911 when she didn’t get to her home in nearby Wayne County.
Emergency responders sat on top of a Humvee as they retraced her route so they could look and listen for anyone in distress.
They heard someone “hollering” and tried to rescue her with a rope but couldn’t. Deno says a National Guard soldier jumped in the water and swam to her, staying a rescued boat arrived.
She was tired and suffering from hypothermia so she was taken to a hospital. Deno didn’t know if she’s still there.
The Red Cross reports that nearly 4,000 people spent the night in shelters as Hurricane Matthew dumped rain across the eastern and central parts of North Carolina.
The Red Cross said in a statement that 3,824 people stayed in 80 Red Cross or partner shelters Saturday night because of power outages, flooded and closed roads, and water shortages.
The Red Cross expects the number of people in shelters to increase as people discover flood and storm damage to their homes.
The agency said 14 emergency response vehicles were going into communities Sunday to distribute food and cleanup kits to residents.
More than 180 Red Cross volunteers are involved in the efforts.
The U.S. Coast Guard has rescued 10 people in North Carolina, including eight from rooftops in Pinetops in Edgecombe County, as state reels from the damage caused by Hurricane Matthew.
The Coast Guard says in a news release that an MH-60 Jayhawk helicopter crew from Air Station Elizabeth City on Sunday morning and took the eight people to Pitt-Greenville Airport.
In addition, the Coast Guard rescued two people stranded Saturday night when their fishing vessel ran aground in Shallotte. Officials say the two were stranded on a marshy island in the Lockwood Folly River.
A crew from Savannah, Georgia, hoisted the two about midnight and took them to the airport in Myrtle Beach, South Carolina. Their vessel, Kokopia, remains aground with 300 gallons of diesel fuel aboard.
Transportation officials in North Carolina are making progress in reopening parts of Interstate 40 after flooding from Hurricane Matthew.
The North Carolina Department of Transportation reported on its website Sunday that there are now only two shutdowns on I-40. A three-mile stretch of the highway is still blocked east of Raleigh in Wake County. There’s also a three-mile shutdown of I-40 east of Benson in Johnston County.
Interstate 95 was still blocked in four different places. Closures were reported on five miles in Robeson County near Lumberton. An eight-mile stretch was closed near Benson in Johnston County. An exit was blocked at Selma, also in Johnston County. A 15-mile stretch was closed near Fayetteville in Cumberland County.
Flooding from the storm has also closed numerous smaller roads around the eastern and central parts of North Carolina.
Matthew continues to move away from North Carolina, leaving behind a toll of least seven deaths, four people missing, and thousands of homes damaged by flooding rains.
The National Hurricane Center said late Sunday morning that Post Tropical Cyclone Matthew was about 100 miles east of Cape Hatteras and moving east at 15 miles an hour. Highest winds were still 75 mph.
A hurricane watch was dropped for North Carolina, but a tropical storm warning remained in effect from Cape Fear up to Duck on the Outer Banks. That warning still included both Pamlico and Albemarle Sounds.
Forecasters warned that tropical storm conditions were still possible in the area Sunday afternoon. But rains were ending in most of the area by midday Sunday.
Gov. Pat McCrory has signed an expedited major disaster declaration that he says will help the state recover from the damage caused by Hurricane Matthew.
McCrory said at a news conference Sunday that he has asked President Obama to sign the declaration that he said will do things such as help people who don’t have flood insurance and help the state repair bridges and roads and get rid of debris.
He says rainfall totals topped 16 inches in Tar Heel in Bladen County; 15 inches in Goldsboro; 12 inches in Fayetteville, Lumberton and Smithfield; 9 inches in Raleigh and Rocky Mount; and 6 inches in Wilmington. In many places, ground was already saturated from previous heavy rain.
He says more than 4,200 people are in shelters, and more than 880 rescues have occurred, including more than 560 in Cumberland County alone. He noted that the National Guard rescued a nurse clinging to a tree Saturday night in Wilson.
In addition, 911 systems are down in five counties: Currituck, Bladen, Moore, Columbus and Robeson. He says that’s a serious issue, especially if people are trapped.
Officials in Cumberland County say they still have more than 500 people in shelters after the flooding from Hurricane Matthew.
County Commission Chairman Marshal Faircloth says the county is in a “dire situation” after flooding from the storm that resulted in more than 225 water rescue missions that saved 574 people Saturday and Sunday morning.
Emergency services director Randy Beeman says it’s important for people to stay home after the storm. He said seven swift water rescue teams were still available in the area for additional rescues.
Officials say four people are missing.
Mayor Nat Robertson says some restaurants are closed because of damage to the water system.
He said many streets are impassable.
Flooding from Hurricane Matthew has closed several interstate highways in North Carolina.
The North Carolina Department of Transportation reported Sunday morning that Interstate 95 was blocked in four different places. Closures were reported on five miles in Robeson County near Lumberton. An eight-mile stretch was closed near Benson in Johnston County. An exit was blocked at Selma, also in Johnston County. A 15-mile stretch was closed near Fayetteville in Cumberland County.
Interstate 40 also had road closures. A three-mile stretch was closed east of Raleigh in Wake County. A seven-mile stretch was closed east of Benson in Johnston County. A three-mile stretch was closed near Warsaw in Duplin County and an exit was closed in Saint Helena in Pender County.
North Carolina Gov. Pat McCrory says the death toll from Hurricane Matthew has increased from three to seven.
McCrory said Sunday morning that the state faces “major destruction” after the storm. He has asked the federal government for more help.
McCrory said there have been more than 800 water rescues, not only along coastal areas but inland as well.
Four people are missing in Fayetteville in the floods.
Matthew was downgraded from a hurricane to a post-tropical cyclone early Sunday.
McCrory said that “the storm is not over for North Carolina.”
The governor said more than 760-thousand customers are without electricity in the state.
Cumberland County officials say four people are missing in the flooding that resulted as Hurricane Matthew moved off the North Carolina coast.
Officials said that 574 people were saved in the county during 227 swift-water rescue missions Saturday and Sunday.
Officials also said that Cumberland County schools will be closed Monday as recovery from the storm continues.
County offices and courts will also be closed while flood waters recede.
Brunswick County emergency officials say about 100 guests and workers had to be evacuated during Hurricane Matthew from a Comfort Inn motel in the North Carolina coastal town of Southport because the roof was at risk of collapsing. Emergency Services Director Brian Watts said the hurricane ‘s winds Saturday night caused a load-bearing wall to crack and the roof was in imminent danger of collapsing. Watts said everyone was safely removed from the motel about three miles from the coast and spent the night in a Red Cross shelter.
He said shortly after dawn Sunday that reports were only beginning to filter in, but he expected some of the worst damage to be centered on Southport and the neighboring barrier island communities of Caswell Beach and Oak Island.
What was Hurricane Matthew is heading out to sea, but it’s leaving behind flooding across North Carolina and at least three deaths.
The National Weather Service downgraded Matthew to a post-tropical cyclone early Sunday. At 5 a.m., the storm was 30 miles southeast of Cape Hatteras and was moving east at 14 mph.
A hurricane watch was still in effect was Surf City to Duck on the Outer Banks, including Pamlico and Albemarle Sounds. A tropical storm warning was in effect from Cape Fear to Duck, including the sounds.
Forecasters said the storm should be well east of the coast Sunday afternoon.
But there are serious flooding problems across much of eastern and even central North Carolina.
Gov. Pat McCrory planned to update the situation at a 9 a.m. briefing.