Storm Florence is hitting North and South Carolina, and Virginia and weather forecasters warn of the risk of life-threatening flash flooding in parts of the states.
Florence has been downgraded from a hurricane to a tropical storm but continues to soak the East Coast area with rain, downing trees and damaging homes.
It is slowly grinding over the eastern states, with winds of 65mph.
Five deaths have been linked to the storm and thousands of people have been staying in emergency shelters.
Evacuation warnings were issued for 1.7 million people in the region.
All five deaths linked to the storm are in North Carolina.
Hurricane Florence Sparks Evacuations in South Carolina and States of Emergency in North Carolina and Virginia
Florence originally made landfall at Wrightsville Beach, North Carolina, on Friday morning as a category one hurricane.
The National Hurricane Center said on September 14 that “catastrophic fresh water flooding” is expected in parts of both the Carolinas.
Some parts of North Carolina have already seen surges as high as 10ft in places.
North Carolina Governor Roy Cooper said the hurricane was likely to “continue its violent grind for days” and described the severity of the downfalls as a “1,000 year event”.
Florence is expected to dump 18 trillion gallons of rainwater on US soil, meteorologist Ryan Maue tweeted.
Almost 800,000 people are reported to be without power already in North Carolina, and officials have warned restoring electricity could take days or even weeks.
More than 20,000 residents have packed into North Carolina emergency shelters, and officials have told those still in the storm’s path to stay in place.
In Jacksonville, North Carolina, officials had rescued more than 60 people overnight on September 13 from a hotel that was collapsing in the storm.
Parts of New Bern, North Carolina, which is home to 30,000 people, were 10ft underwater on September 14 after local rivers flooded their banks.
Scores of residents in the riverfront city were plucked to safety, local reports say.