September 16: Ten Year Anniversary Of Hurricane Floyd

Ten years ago today, Hurricane Floyd made landfall in North Carolina.

In the early morning hours of September 16th, Floyd made landfall in the Wilmington area as a category two hurricane. When the storm first came ashore it had maximum winds of 104 mph. While there was an initial sense of relief because the storm had lost some strength, that quickly changed when communities all across Eastern Carolina began to see the waters rise from the 10 to 24 inches of rain, in addition to the 8 to 10 inches of rain from Hurricane Dennis just two weeks earlier. What followed has been described as a 500-year flood event.

The CDC says 52 people in North Carolina died as a direct result from the storm. Read more about the deadly effects of Floyd.

As a result of Floyd, 66 out of 100 counties in North Carolina were declared disaster areas. More than 48,000 people were displaced to shelters during the worst of the flooding, only five percent of those had flood insurance. Throughout the flood 54,000 North Carolina homes were damaged with more than 16,000 of those either destroyed or left uninhabitable, according to the N.C. Division of Emergency Management and The Charlotte Observer. North Carolina’s agriculture and livestock industries suffered as well, with the agriculture industry losing over 963 million dollars. The livestock industry lost millions of chickens and thousands of turkeys, and hogs.

The overall devastation was into the billions.

WITN will continue its week-long look at Hurricane Floyd tonight at 6 p.m. with a look at how the storm impacted Princeville in Edgecombe County.

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