Governor Cooper Issues State Of Emergency For N.C. In Response To Severe Weather

RALEIGH, N.C. — Governor Roy Cooper issued a State of Emergency for North Carolina on Wednesday in response to Tropical Depression Fred.

Cooper says this will activate the state’s emergency operations plan and waive transportation rules to help first responders and the agriculture industry.

“This state of emergency will allow our first responders to get into our affected communities quickly to save lives, restore power, remove debris and bring supplies,” said Governor Cooper. “North Carolina is strong and resilient, and we’re committed to helping people and businesses recover as quickly as possible.”

The Executive Order waives the size and weight requirements for vehicles carrying emergency relief supplies or services used to help with restoring utility services, debris removal, and emergency/relief efforts.

Cooper says the order will also help residents harvest and transport their crops more quickly, by temporarily suspending weighing of vehicles used to transport livestock, poultry, or other crops.

Officials say more than a foot of rain has fallen over the past three days in western North Carolina, and Haywood County appears to be the most severely impacted, with at least 30 people still reported missing in the county.

Officials say water systems in Canton and Clyde have been impacted and boil water advisories remain in effect.

North Carolina Emergency Management has deployed swift water rescue teams from across the state to western North Carolina, and National Guard and Highway Patrol helicopter crews are still conducting searches.

Officials say more than 250 first responders are involved in search and rescue efforts.

Haywood, Jackson, McDowell, Madison, Mitchell, Rutherford, Transylvania and Yancey counties have all declared local states of emergency, according to a news release.

Officials say utility companies are working to restore power after outages peaked at about 50,000 customers Tuesday night. There are currently approximately 11,600 outages reported.