Hurricane Florence

File Photo

Impacts from Tropical Storm Isaias remain in the Cape Fear Region, including the City of Wilmington. Natosha Tew is Wilmington's Emergency Management Coordinator. She spoke with WHQR about storm recovery efforts in the city. 

Katelyn Freund


The Wilmington City Council held its first budget work session of the year last Friday, and as members consider future expenses, the effects of Hurricane Florence are still being felt. 


On September 14th, 2018, Hurricane Florence made landfall in Wilmington, NC. WHQR stayed through the storm, holed up in the third floor studios downtown even as the building began to sway from the storm’s heavy winds. 

Almost a year later, after listening to staff members discuss their experience, WHQR’s 2019 summer intern Annabelle Crowe decided to investigate how the WHQR team worked together to weather the storm. 

Nick Santillo

Wilmington is moving ahead on the North Waterfront Park project. That’s despite a multimillion dollar budget increase and fewer features than initially planned. City Council approved several measures related to the $30 million downtown riverfront development last night. 

Vince Winkel

It’s not too late to receive crisis counseling from Hurricane Florence. A state-wide hurricane counseling program, Hope 4 NC, is still up and running, thanks to a $12.2 million federal grant announced by Governor Roy Cooper in April. Today, the program has made contact with 287,000 individuals in 28 North Carolina counties.

Preparing For A Flood In New Hanover County

Aug 15, 2019
Vince Winkel

Flooding is a concern in the Cape Fear region. Even more so with last week’s announcement from the National Hurricane Center: the remaining storm season could be busier than usual. This week New Hanover County residents heard from flood experts on ways to prepare property and qualify for flood insurance discounts. 

Wilmington is still reeling from the aftermath of Hurricane Florence, and the latest city budget reflects that. The 200 million dollar 2019-2020 budget has been unanimously approved by the city council, and much of its focus centers around severe weather relief and planning.

Hurricane Florence And The Fish Industry

May 5, 2019
Vince Winkel / WHQR Public Radio

The fishing industry in Southeastern North Carolina came to a grounding halt when Hurricane Florence pounded the coast in mid-September. Since then, officials say, the industry has rebounded thanks in part to the Hurricane Florence Commercial Fishing Assistance Program.

Area Public Schools Closing for Teacher Rally

Apr 30, 2019

New Hanover and Brunswick County Schools close tomorrow for the North Carolina Association of Educators’ Day of Action. Pender County Schools remain open – despite closing last year.  As WHQR reports, it’s the second year the two counties have closed schools while staff rally at the General Assembly. 

Vince Winkel

North Carolina Gov. Roy Cooper spent most of today in Wilmington visiting local businesses six months after Hurricane Florence, and speaking at the Wilmington Downtown Inc. Annual Meeting. At a visit to Port City Java on Front Street, the Governor told WHQR he’s impressed with the hurricane recovery here.

NASA / WHQR Public Radio

Hurricane Florence hit the Cape Fear region September 14, 2018.   She made landfall with significantly lower wind speeds than originally predicted -- as a Category 1 – but she had expanded in size and slowed down, which meant torrential rainfall over the Carolinas along with hurricane and tropical storm force winds.  

Six Months After Hurricane Florence

Mar 14, 2019
Vince Winkel

Six months ago, Hurricane Florence pounded the Cape Fear Region, with a mix of strong winds and record-setting rain. Today, Wilmington and the rest of Southeastern North Carolina are still in recovery mode.

Vince Winkel

This week the deadline passed for applying for assistance from the Federal Emergency Management Agency or FEMA, in the wake of Hurricane Florence. They have closed their support center at the Independence Mall. But the agency is still active in the region.

Vince Winkel

FEMA has announced that crisis counseling services available for people who have been impacted by the Hurricane Florence disaster are available. 

$17 Billion in Damages from Hurricane Florence

Nov 2, 2018
Vince Winkel / WHQR News

Hurricane Florence is going to cost North Carolina nearly $17 billion.  That’s more than the cost of Hurricanes Matthew and Floyd combined.  

Hurricane Florence barreled into the Cape Fear region less than one month ago.  Now, the remnants of Michael are bringing more wind, rain, and possible flooding to southeastern North Carolina.

Vince Winkel

The death toll in North Carolina from Hurricane Florence currently stands at 39. In New Hanover County, an 85-year old man died from an infected cut after cleaning storm debris. Much of the storm-related pollution, and risk for infection, is in the water.

Former Sears Converted Into Recovery Center at Mall

Oct 2, 2018
Vince Winkel

It’s been almost three weeks since Hurricane Florence slammed into the Cape Fear region. And during these last few weeks, thousands of residents and small business owners have been trying to put their lives back together. They have had some help. Such as the Disaster Recovery Center at Independence Mall.

Vince Winkel

U.S. Geological Survey crews are in the field around Wilmington, gathering information to document the depth and extent of flooding brought by Hurricane Florence’s rains and storm surge. 

Vince Winkel

New Hanover County will open a Community Recovery Resource Center on Friday, Sept. 28 at Independence Mall to assist residents of New Hanover County and surrounding areas as they recover from Hurricane Florence.

FEMA Opening Disaster Recovery Center in Wilmington

Sep 26, 2018
Vince Winkel

FEMA, the Federal Emergency Management Agency, is opening a Disaster Recovery Center in Wilmington.  UPDATE: The center will open Sept. 28, at Independence Mall.      

UNCW Classes Resume Oct. 8, NHCS Also Delayed

Sep 26, 2018

The University of North Carolina Wilmington will stay closed to students another week, with classes not resuming until Oct. 8.

University officials announced the change Wednesday, a day after campus leaders had said they planned to restart classes Oct. 1. 

As early as Friday, residents in 27 counties impacted by Hurricane   Florence can apply for help buying food through the Disaster Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program, or “D-SNAP”, Governor Roy Cooper announced Wednesday. The North Carolina Department of Health and Human Services received federal authority to implement the program from the U.S. Department of Agriculture.

Vince Winkel

This week the flood waters from Hurricane Florence should begin receding. Those waters contain more waste today than they did two weeks ago. Some of that waste could create environmental problems.

Wilmington Begins To Move Forward

Sep 24, 2018
Vince Winkel

The sound of generators and sirens is being replaced by the sound of chainsaws in the cape fear region. Local businesses are starting to distribute relief supplies to local residents. As WHQR's Vince Winkel reports, a variety of local establishments are playing a role.  

Jeff Hunter

About half of WHQR’s staff left Wilmington to avoid Hurricane Florence. Jeff Hunter was the first of the staff to return -- and it wasn’t an easy journey. Jeff told WHQR’s Gina Gambony about the slow road home.


Points of Distribution around New Hanover, Brunswick, and Pender Counties are providing food, water, and tarps to people in need.  Armies of volunteers, law enforcement agencies, and military groups are working together to keep the lines moving.  But one neighborhood in Wilmington has launched its own rescue effort.

Temple B'Nai Israel on Chestnut Street had some trees down and roof damage that affected the sanctuary.
David Boraks / WHQR

Wednesday is Yom Kippur, the Day of Atonement, and one of the holiest days in the Jewish calendar. But Hurricane Florence has forced synagogues in Wilmington to cancel services. The sanctuaries at Both Temple of Israel and B'nai Israel were damaged in the storm.

Operation BBQ Relief Sets Up In Wilmington

Sep 19, 2018
Vince Winkel

Finding food can be a challenge during the days after a hurricane.  Starting today, a national organization has set up camp in Wilmington, to feed the community. They will be preparing tens of thousands of meals. WHQR’s Vince Winkel reports. 

Food Trucks Try And Keep Pace With Storm Demand

Sep 19, 2018
Vince Winkel

Food and water is being flown into the Cape Fear region. Slowly more stores and gas stations are opening. Food trucks are also out and about, cooking what they have, and tring to make a dent in the need for food.