1.7 million chickens drowned in Florence flooding

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Michael Jordan, who grew up in Wilmington, North Carolina, close to where Florence came ashore as a Category 1 hurricane, has donated $2 million to relief and recovery agencies.

President Donald Trump, meanwhile, arrived in storm-ravaged North Carolina on Wednesday.

More than 10,000 people are still in disaster shelters and many could find themselves essentially homeless after the floodwaters recede.

"People in flood prone areas or near waterways need to remain alert as rivers crest and stay above their banks in coming days", North Carolina Governor Roy Cooper said in a written statement.

Some 4,700 people across North Carolina have been rescued by boat or helicopter since the storm made landfall, twice as many as in Hurricane Matthew two years ago, according to state officials.

WALLACE, SC - SEPTEMBER 17: Floodwaters inundate a barn after Hurricane Florence struck the Carolinas Monday, Sept. 17, 2018, near Wallace, South Carolina.

"I know for many people this feels like a nightmare that just won't end", Cooper said.

"And the deaths - it was so sad about the babies (one of whom died in Wilmington)".

The flooding from Florence has also caused 21 hog "lagoons", which store manure from pig farms, to overflow in North Carolina, possibly contaminating standing water, according to the state's Department of Environmental Quality. The utility later agreed to plead guilty to nine Clean Water Act violations and pay $102 million in fines and restitution for illegally discharging pollution from ash dumps at five North Carolina power plants.

The deaths of at least 36 people have been attributed to the storm, including 27 in North Carolina, eight in SC and one in Virginia.

Authorities say two female inmates being transported to a mental health facility in SC drowned in rising flood waters after the van they were in was swept away.

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Women Die In Flooded Van Driven By South Carolina Deputies
The vehicle, staffed by two Horry County Sheriff's Office deputies, was transporting two detainees from Conway to Darlington. The van was attempting to cross a flooded area of Highway 76 in Marion County when it got swept away, according to cops.

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Human and animal waste is mixing with the swirling floodwaters, which have killed about 1.7 million chickens on poultry farms.

In Bladen County, North Carolina, around 100 people and 33 animals were rescued "in a unsafe operation in the middle of the night" after a dam burst, Governor Roy Cooper said in a twitter post on Friday.

Last year, North Carolina farmers also raised 830.8 million chickens for meat, 9 percent of the US flock, and 32.5 million turkeys, or 13 percent of the USA total, according to the USDA. Residents in the nearby town of Conway worry that's going to send water from the rising Waccamaw River to flood their homes instead.

In Wilmington on Tuesday, workers began handing out supplies using a system resembling a giant fast-food drive-thru: Drivers pulled up to a line of pallets, placed an order and left without having to get out.

A woman blew a whistle each time drivers were supposed to pull forward.

Todd Tremain needed tarps to cover up spots where Florence's winds ripped shingles off his roof. An olive-drab military forklift moved around huge pallets loaded with supplies.

"Florence has been a nasty one", Trump continued.

"It's been pretty bad", said Echavarrieta, 34, his voice breaking.

"Over the next couple of days, it's going to get rough in SC". Rivers swollen by days of rain still threaten communities barely touched by the storm.

Fayetteville Mayor Mitch Colvin said it was unclear if the bridge was threatened.

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