NEWPORT, N.C. (WNCT) – In the wake of Matthew, the sun made its triumphant return Sunday and the wind died down. But the worst of Matthew is still to come.
“By getting the additional six inches to a foot of rainfall that fell the last 24 hours, we’re looking at very significant and in fact catastrophic flooding across most of Eastern North Carolina as a result of the rivers coming up,” said Sarah Jamison, a hydrologist with the National Weather Service in Newport.
Major rivers and creeks across the East are expected to crest at levels that haven’t been seen since Hurricane Floyd in 1999.
“We are talking about a flood event with catastrophic impacts to a large portion of Eastern North Carolina that will be ongoing for the next couple of weeks,” said Jamison.
And time is running out to get ready for it.
“Rivers are really going to increase here in the next 24 hours,” said Jamison. “We’re expecting many of them to go into major flood during that time frame. Once they reach major flood, there’s going to be a steady rise, some of them cresting as we said at Floyd levels and remaining in major flood well into the weekend and likely into next week.”
Jamison says if you were impacted by floods during Floyd, you should be preparing now. Rivers will start to jump above flood stage as soon as Monday and many will stay there for at least the next week or two.
NEWPORT, N.C. (WNCT) – As water levels from Saturday’s flash flooding slowly recede, meteorologists, including First Alert Weather, are warning about another round of flooding to come.
9 On Your Side traveled up Highway 70 to Newport Sunday to talk with Sarah Jamison at the National Weather Service. She is closely monitoring river levels is deeply concerned about the forecast for the days ahead.
The Tar, Neuse, Contentnea, and Northeast Cape Fear all expected to crest at historic levels.
“What we’re gonna be anticipating the next several days is several hundreds if not thousands of businesses and properties being inundated,” said Sarah Jamison, Hydrologist, NWS Newport/Morehead City. “People are going to have to evacuate. They’re going to have to be in temporary shelters.”
Overall, this round of flooding could last up to a week or two in some areas.
Jamison said the flooding could rival that which followed Floyd back in 1999. Some rivers could start spilling over their banks as soon as Tuesday.
So realistically, you may only have today, perhaps tomorrow if you’re lucky, to get yourself prepared for it.
Click here for an interactive map of areas that will be flooded in Greenville when the Tar River crests.
Click here for an interactive map of areas that will be flooded in Kinston when the Neuse River crests.
Click here for an interactive map of areas that will be flooded in Hookerton when the Contentnea Creek crests.
Click here for an interactive map of areas that will be flooded in Chinquapin when the NE Cape Fear River crests.