He said five deaths were confirmed from the storm and "several others are under investigation".
So far, at least three people have died because of the storm, including a mother and infant who were in a Mercer Avenue house when it was struck by a felled tree. The child's injured father was taken to hospital. Floyd produced 24 inches of rain in some parts of the state, while Florence has already dumped about 30 inches in areas around Swansboro.
The enormous storm crept at a 6 miles per hour pace, making it clear that the trouble was just beginning. People were stuck in their cars, attics and rooftops, waiting for rescuers in boats.
Roads became flooded, trees blown over and homes destroyed as some parts of North Carolina have already seen surges of flood water as high as 10ft. By late afternoon, Beaufort County Manager Brian Alligood hoped the worst was over. "We can pump 42,000 gallons (159,000 litres) a minute once we have water receded enough".
But the size of the storm meant the path didn't really matter. As of 5 a.m. Saturday, the storm's center was about 35 miles west of Myrtle Beach, according to the National Hurricane Center.
Even though Florence was downgraded from a hurricane to a tropical storm, it's still considered unsafe and could be deadly for anyone in its path.
Another individual's death was reported Friday in coastal Pender County though few details are known.
Cooper warned: "Don't drive through water, no matter how confident you feel or how much you want to get out of the house". Emergency crews also rescued an Onslow family from their home where a tree fell through the roof, Jordan said.
Power outages increased throughout Friday. "I have no money, no job, no connections", Tony Clower, a homeless Kinston, North Carolina, resident, told the Asheville Citizen-Times.
A man attached to a respiratory machine sits in a shelter run by Red Cross before Hurricane Florence comes ashore in Grantsboro, N.C., September 13, 2018.
The Triangle is under a flash flood warning until 8 p.m. Sunday.
Florence is still a unsafe storm and is linked to at least five deaths so far. He urged residents to stay inside and not get in the way of emergency workers.
Interested in Hurricane Florence?The price tag on the rebuild efforts for areas devastated by storm surge, which was expected to reach as high as 20 feet in some areas, was still impossible to quantify. In Belhaven, the rising Pungo River almost swallowed the firstfloor of a house.
Doll said that people living in low-lying areas next to streams, creeks and rivers, especially in farther inland areas, need to pay attention and evacuate in case rivers start flooding.
Wind gusts as high as 60 miles per hour were recorded in the Myrtle Beach area. In South Carolina there were 7,000 people staying in shelters. He added that there would be no mercy for those who try to steal from others' homes during the storm.
In Washington, North Carolina, the wind-swept Pamlico River has risen beyond its banks and is flooding entire neighborhoods.
More than 22,600 people in North Carolina were housed in 150 shelters statewide, including schools, churches and Wake Forest University's basketball arena. Additional swiftwater rescue teams were on the way.
New Bern, which has a population of about 30,000, was once the capital of the state's colonial government.