Kinston residents prepare for historic flooding as Neuse River reaches record levels

KINSTON, N.C. (WNCT) – All eyes are on the Neuse River in Kinston as residents and leaders wait for it to crest at historic flood levels Friday.

It’s already surpassed record flood levels set after Hurricane Floyd and it’s only expected to get worse.

Highway 70 is completely flooded. Many homes and businesses have several feet of standing water in them. Earlier this week, police officers went door to door, urging residents to evacuate.

WNCT spoke with one of those residents who said Floyd destroyed her home once and after this time, she plans to move elsewhere.

“Since it was a hundred year flood zone and it’s back in 16 17 years, it’s possible it’s going to happen again so I’m not planning a third flood. So I’m planning to really since I’ve evacuated, I’m going to be evacuated,” Carolyn Dawson said.

Dawson says this time, she’s learned her lesson.

“There’s nothing I can do so there’s no need in panicking like a lot of people are panicking. All you really have to do is calm down because there’s nothing you can do. If you waited till the last minute or so and the water is coming, there’s nothing that you can do so you might as well calm down and take one day at a time,” Dawson said.

The Neuse River is expected to crest sometime Friday night right around 29 feet. At last check, the river was at 28 feet. It reached just below 28 feet during Floyd.

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