On Friday, Sept. 14, 2018, at 7:15 a.m., Hurricane Florence made landfall at Wrightsville Beach, North Carolina, with sustained winds of 90 mph. However, the flooding associated with Florence would prove more devastating than just hurricane-force winds. Hurricane Florence dropped more than 33 inches of rain in portions of North Carolina, causing widespread destruction that people could never have imagined.
Florence created more challenges for Coast Guard responders than the usual storm response. With the hurricane approaching the southeast U.S., a region with an abundant Coast Guard population, service men and women had the additional responsibility of preparing their own families and homes while planning for a large-scale recovery effort. Every Coast Guard member from Jacksonville, Florida, to Northern Virginia, kept an eye on the weather. For this storm, the safety of service members’ families was essential when deciding whether to evacuate loved ones to a safe area while planning for a response. Read on.