Across the Northeast, Irene threatened to flood many miles of land that are already saturated from heavy rain. Parts of Rhode Island are still recovering from devastating 2010 spring floods.
Back in North Carolina, officials also were preparing for what might happen to those who don't evacuate. Richard Marlin, the fire chief in Frisco, said he ordered 75 extra body bags for a town that normally keeps 10 on hand.
"I anticipate we're going to have people floating on the streets, and I don't want to leave them lying there," Marlin said. If the storm maintains its current track, "the Coast Guard will either be pulling people off their roofs like in Katrina or we'll be scraping them out of their yards."
Associated Press writers Michael Biesecker in Raleigh, N.C.; Jennifer Peltz in New York; Seth Borenstein in Washington; Wayne Parry, Geoff Mulvihill and Bruce Shipkowski in New Jersey; Brock Vergakis in Virginia; Randall Chase in Ocean City, Md.; Harry Weber in Miami; Martha Waggoner in North Carolina; David Sharp in Portland, Maine; and Bruce Smith in Pawleys Island, S.C., contributed to this story.
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