Hurricane Matthew

U.S. National Guard

Administrative mistakes and a lack of expertise caused delays in North Carolina's spending of federal funds for Hurricane Matthew recovery, according to a report released Monday from the General Assembly's government watchdog agency.

A Duke Energy worker uses a drone to examine damage to Puerto Rico's electric system in 2018. The company now is considering a bid to run the system.
Duke Energy

Duke Energy is among four finalists chosen to compete for the right to take over Puerto Rico's troubled electricity distribution system.

Hurricane Florence
David Boraks / WFAE

Floodwaters rose about 15 inches into Danielle Rees' home in September when Hurricane Florence drenched the tidewater city of Washington, North Carolina, which is located on the Pamlico River, and overwhelmed a local creek and marshland. The first floor was a sopping mess of gritty, swampy water in three bedrooms, a bathroom and a laundry.

David Boraks / WFAE

A new report released Tuesday showed rainfall from Hurricane Florence resulted in record flooding across the Carolinas, upending records set by Hurricane Matthew just two years prior.

'Hope To Hopelessness:' Will Government Step Up After Second Storm?

Oct 10, 2018
AP Photo/Gerald Herber

Dianne Powell is living a recurring nightmare.

In October 2016, Hurricane Matthew filled her brick house with rainwater up to her waist. The storm inundated her town, engulfing homes and highways and causing $4.8 billion worth of damage statewide.

She rebuilt. Then Hurricane Florence struck and swamped her home again.

National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration

Today marks the beginning of what’s predicted to be a busy hurricane season. Scott Sharp, a forecaster with the National Weather Service in Raleigh, says it’s likely North Carolina will see another Hurricane Matthew-sized storm this year.

“Those two ingredients – a little less wind shear aloft and abundant warm water - will indicate that we will have a little bit more active season than we would normally have," says Sharp.

Duke Energy is removing coal ash from basins near the retired Riverbend Plant, near Mountain Island Lake.
David Boraks / WFAE

Duke Energy this summer will ask North Carolina regulators to raise the rates consumers pay on their electricity bills for the first time in four years. The rate hikes – at Duke’s two electricity subsidiaries in the state - would help pay for new plants, Hurricane Matthew recovery costs and coal ash cleanups.

Berger
North Carolina General Assembly

Updated 4:40 p.m.
A $201 million disaster relief bill won final approval in the General Assembly Wednesday and now goes to the governor.  The state Senate gave its OK to a revised version of the bill in a 49-0 vote. That bill then went back to the state House of Representatives, where it passed 108-0.  

Meanwhile, House and Senate leaders announced they're calling another special session, but they're not saying why.  

The Neuse River inundated this hog farm in Goldsboro on Wednesday.
Rick Dove / Waterkeeper Alliance

Updated 10:18 p.m.
North Carolina lawmakers reconvened for a special session Tuesday, to consider a bill that would provide $201 million in disaster relief to communities affected by flooding from Hurricane Matthew and wildfires.  The bill easily passed the House of Representatives Tuesday night and now goes to the Senate, which returns at 8 a.m. Wednesday. 

Gov. Pat McCrory announced he's seeking $200 million in emergency funding during this week's special legislative session.
N.C. Governor's Office

Gov. Pat McCrory says he'll ask the General Assembly to approve $200 million in emergency funding during the special session that begins Tuesday. The money will help pay for cleanup and recovery after flooding caused by Hurricane Matthew in eastern North Carolina in late September and wildfires in western North Carolina since October.

The Neuse River inundated this hog farm in Goldsboro on Wednesday.
Rick Dove / Waterkeeper Alliance

Floodwaters in eastern North Carolina are still rising, but so far haven't swamped any of Duke Energy's active coal ash ponds. But environmentalists worry about older, dry, coal-ash basins that did flood. And they're concerned about how animal waste and dead livestock will affect water quality.

A 50-foot section of a cooling pond dam broke at Duke Energy's plant on the Neuse River in Goldsboro. The company says coal ash ponds are not in danger.
Travis Graves / Lower Neuse Riverkeeper

Forty-eight counties have seen flooding from Hurricane Matthew, and waters are still rising in some areas. State officials are watching dams, checking reports of chemical and fuel spills, and starting to count crop and livestock losses.

Hurricane Matthew impaired or destroyed more than 1 million structures, forced businesses from Florida to North Carolina to close and put thousands of people temporarily out of work.

Goldman Sachs estimates the storm likely caused $10 billion in damage overall, but figures suggest Matthew's effect on the broader national economy will be minimal.

Robeson County officials say another man has died in North Carolina as a result of Hurricane Matthew. Officials say the man was inside his car when flood waters washed away the vehicle. The man’s name has not been released. It brings the number of deaths in North Carolina blamed on Hurricane Matthew up to 15.

North Carolina Governer's Office

North Carolina Governor Pat McCrory has declared a state of emergency for all 100 counties in North Carolina ahead of Hurricane Matthew's expected impact. At a Friday storm briefing, McCrory said the state's coastal areas are bracing for the worst.

As Hurricane Matthew approaches the Carolinas, Charleston has reportedly run out of sandbags after distributing more the 15,000 across the city -- more than have ever been distributed for any other storm.

As of Thursday afternoon, Hurricane Matthew is considered a Category 4 hurricane with maximum sustained winds of 140 mph.

South Carolina Governor Nikki Haley has ordered the evacuation of Charleston and Beaufort Counties as Hurricane Matthew barrels toward the east coast. A press release sent out by the governor late Wednesday morning says residents and visitors in Charleston and Beaufort Counties should begin evacuating no later than 3 p.m. Wednesday. The governor’s office says the scope of evacuations could expand to other areas on Thursday as the storm approaches.

Residents on the North Carolina coast are bracing themselves for Hurricane Matthew, which is expected to move up the east coast and hit the Carolinas on Friday night, though gusty winds and rain bands could begin as early as Friday morning.