"We just don't want people to think this is over because it's not".
And dolphins were spotted closer than usual to shore near in Wilmington, North Carolina.
At least five people have died as Tropical Storm Florence slowly crept westward over the Carolinas Saturday, dumping massive amounts of water on the region.
Charlotte and Asheville in North Carolina, and Roanoke, Virginia, could also be in for heavy rains as Florence plods inland.
"The fact that there haven't been more deaths and damage is unbelievable and a blessing", Rebekah Roth said yesterday while walking around Wilmington's Winoca Terrace neighborhood.More news: Rugby Championship: South Africa stun New Zealand in Wellington
As Hurricane Florence, now downgraded to a tropical storm, continued to chart a path of destruction across North and SC on Saturday, school gymnasiums morphed into makeshift shelters for thousands of people displaced from their homes in nearby flood-prone areas. Authorities expect the death toll to rise in the coming days.
Jacob Fernandez (left) and Josh Fernandez play around on the tree that fell near their home as Hurricane Florence passed through the area on Friday in Bolivia, N.C.
United States media later said a man in Lenoir County died after heavy winds knocked him down as he tried to check on his dogs.
A 77-year-old man has also died after apparently being knocked down by the wind when he went out to check on his hunting dogs. The man's family found his body Friday morning, according to Dail.
South Carolina Governor Henry McMaster on Saturday announced the death of a 61-year-old woman who died when her vehicle hit a downed tree on a highway.
Trump previously declared states of emergency in North and SC, and Virginia. Seventy people had to be pulled from a collapsing hotel at the height of the storm, and many more who defied evacuation orders were hoping to be rescued.
With flood waters advancing rapidly in many communities, around 50 stranded people had been airlifted out by helicopter in North Carolina, said Petty Officer Michael Himes of the U.S. Coast Guard.More news: Ibrahimovic scores 500th career goal
Environmentalists have been warning for decades that Duke's coal ash ponds were vulnerable to severe storms and pose a threat to drinking water supplies and public safety.
Mr Cooper said: "North Carolina Emergency Management experts have been sharing flood mapping with local officials". That's enough to fill the Chesapeake Bay or cover the entire state of Texas with almost 4 inches (10 centimetres) of water, he calculated.
North Carolina alone is forecast to get 9.6 trillion gallons (36 trillion litres), enough to cover the Tar Heel state to a depth of about 10 inches (25 centimetres). The storm will dump rain in the Carolinas through the weekend.
The national meteorological center says southern China "will face a severe test caused by wind and rain" and urged officials to prepare for possible disasters.
"This is a hurricane event followed by a flood event", said South Carolina Governor Henry McMaster.
In New Bern, at the confluence of the Neuse and Trent rivers in North Carolina, Florence overwhelmed the town of 30,000, with the downtown area under water. "Nobody expected this", a rescued resident, Tom Ballance, toldThe Weather Channel.More news: Good start carries Bengals past Ravens
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