THESE shocking pictures show the true extent of Hurricane Florence – a powerful storm dubbed a “1,000 year event”.
Although it has been downgraded to a tropical storm, slow-moving Florence is already blasting North and South Carolina with torrential rain and severe floods.
At least five people have died, including a mother and her baby, who were in a house in Wilmington when it was struck by a falling tree.
In Lenoir County, a 78-year-old man was electrocuted attempting to connect extension cords, and another died when he was blown away by high winds while checking on his hunting dogs.
Florence had been a category three hurricane with 120mph winds as of Thursday, but dropped to a category one hurricane before coming ashore.
“As we go forward, the death toll will go higher”
National Civil Defence head Ricardo Jalad
Evacuation warnings were issued for 1.7 million people in the region.
Dramatic photos show the carnage at the scene, including quickly rising flood waters set to submerge a pair expensive sports cars.
Brave volunteers are seen defying the danger and continuing to rescue residents and their pets.
And the damage posed by high winds is evidenced by destroyed petrol stations and cars crushed by falling trees.
Some parts of North Carolina have already seen surges as high as 10ft in places.
North Carolina Governor Roy Cooper described the hurricane as likely to “continue its violent grind for days” and described the severity of the downfalls as a “1,000 year event”.
Florence is expected to dump 18 trillion gallons of rainwater on US soil, meteorologist Ryan Maue tweeted.
Almost 800,000 people are reported to be without power already in North Carolina, and officials have warned restoring electricity could take days or even weeks.