BY BROOKE HOLLAND AND SOPHIA BELLONE
Last week a powerful storm titled Hurricane Florence made landfall in the southern United States, specifically targeting the Carolinas. Universities were evacuated, sending students home and away from the direct impact of the storm. According to The News and Observer, so far there have been 25 deaths recorded from the storm, 19 of which being located in North Carolina.
According the CBS News, on Monday, September 17, 2018 the storm was still massive, sprawling over six states with North and South Carolina in the bullseye. At 11 a.m., Florence was classified as a Tropical Depression with winds up to 25 mph, the National Hurricane Center said. Many different regions of North Carolina have received over 20 inches of rain, with Swansboro, North Carolina getting swamped with over 30 inches. The National Hurricane Center also reported flash flooding and and major river flooding over a majority of North and South Carolina.
On Monday morning at around 7 a.m. The National Weather Service was continuing to issue tornado warnings, keeping residents of the affected areas on edge as the storm continued to strike their communities.
As the storm continues to roll over the south, a second tornado touched down right outside of Richmond, VA, CBS News reports. It was confirmed by the National Weather Service that the second tornado touched down in the Chesterfield County Monday afternoon. As Florence continues to move through the state, tornado and flash flood warnings stand in place.
With all the damage being caused by the storm, it leaves people wondering what this means for low income members of the communities affected. The poverty of these particular regions leaves locals wondering how they will be able to afford to cover repair costs that will be needed to cover damages caused by Florence. For example according to Citizen Times, in Kinston, North Carolina, home to nearly 21,000 people, recently braved Hurricane Matthew which left behind its own path of destruction. Due to financial restraints, some residents of this area were forced to buckle down and prepare to brave the storm to come without the privilege of having the option to flee. Kinston resident Ben Knight is one of the many who made the decision to stay, and commented on the poverty being an anchor on people’s’ ability to head to safety. “With the median income of this town being less than half of the national average, some people will have to stay,” Knight said.
As the storm continues to rage across the southern regions of our country, all we can do up north is keep the families and communities that are being affected by the storm in our thoughts. There are many nonprofit organizations already gearing up to dive in head first and aid in recovery efforts. If you’d like to contribute to relief and recovery, some organizations are listed on page 2 of this section.