Florence recovery 'will take years:' North Carolina Congressman

Despite improving conditions, flooding continues to create chaos in North Carolina, according to Rep. George Holding, R-N.C.

Florence made landfall early Friday morning as a Category 1 hurricane before being downgraded to a tropical storm. The storm has already dumped massive amounts of rain and flooded parts of the Carolinas, but Holding warned that conditions could only get worse as flood levels continue to rise.

“The flooding is still a serious, serious problem throughout North Carolina,” he told FOX Business’ Charles Payne on Monday. “As we go to the western part of the state there are a lot of roads closed there from flash flooding and the governor has also warned [people] to be on the lookout for mudslides in the western part of the state as the rains continue up there. We’ll have more rain here in the East later today.”

With flooding expected to peak on Wednesday, Holding expects cleanup and recovery to take a long time.

“The cleanup will take months and the recovery will take years,” he said.

Mandatory evacuations were issued for several coastal areas in North Carolina, South Carolina and Virginia before the storm, and according to Holding many residents are still unable to return home.

“Parts of I-95 are still closed due to flooding, parts of I-40 [are] closed due to flooding. These are major interstates so if they’re closed, I saw estimates of 700 roads closed in North Carolina due to flooding.”

“My brother is down in New Bern, North Carolina, and New Bern is isolated and cut off so people are advised not to come back quite yet” he added. “I know folks want to see the damage [and] assess the situation but don’t take a risk if you’re in a safe place, you need to stay there right now.”