Princeville issues evacuation for entire town as ‘major flooding’ is forecast

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PRINCEVILLE, N.C. (WNCN) — The town of Princeville in Edgecombe County has issued a mandatory evacuation order on Sunday after flooding from Hurricane Matthew, officials said.

UPDATE: All you can do is pray,’ says NC man evacuated during Princeville flooding


“The Princeville Board of Commissioners issued a mandatory evacuation for all citizens due to potential flooding and a 7 p.m. curfew has been set,” town officials said.

Authorities said that buses would be available from 4:30 to 5:30 p.m. buses to pick up residents from Southern Terrace, Lone Pine, Princeville Town Hall, St. Luke Church of God Disciple of Christ and Pioneer Court Apartments.

The buses will take residents to shelters and Edgecombe County Sheriff’s deputies will be following the buses to make sure they get there safely, according to authorities.

Officials said that they decided to evacuate around 2:20 p.m. Sunday during a town meeting with Edgecombe County officials.

“Torrential rain from Hurricane Matthew on Saturday caused flash flooding throughout the town. Due to the rising water, several citizens in the Southern Terrace and Lone Pine communities were evacuated and early Sunday morning the town issued a voluntary evacuation,” officials said in a statement.

Authorities also said that Edgecombe County deputies went house-to-house in Princeville issuing the warning.

“Heavy traffic throughout the town appeared to be evidence that many of the citizens were heeding to the warning,” officials said.

The National Weather Service outlined the threat to Princeville in a flood warning.

At 2:15 p.m. Sunday the stage of the Tar River was 24.8 feet with flood stage at 19.0 feet.

“Moderate flooding is occurring and major flooding is forecast,” the weather service said.

The river will continue rising to near 35.8 feet early Tuesday morning, forecasters said.

The river reached 26.6 feet during Hurricane Fran more than 20 years ago.

Here are the various impacts the weather service forecasts from various river levels:

At 34.6 feet, water reaches the base of the Princeville dike.

At 33.6 feet, this is the elevation of the Railroad bed which cuts through the Princeville dike. The emergency gate must be manually installed to prevent water from flowing into the town of

At 32.0 feet, major flood stage. Baker and St James street begin to flood.

At 24.0 feet, moderate flooding begins in Tarboro. River Road is underwater and flooding begins on East Wilson and St David

At 37.0 feet, failure may be expected at the Princeville dike and flooding begins in the town of Princeville.

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