More than 4,300 homes were damaged or destroyed in the storm and over 300 businesses faced the same fate, he said.
A power outage at a wastewater treatment plant in Wilmington resulted in partially treated sewage water being released into the Cape Fear River, said Reggie Cheatham, director of the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency's Office of Emergency Management. Most areas received around 10 inches of rain.
Flooded roads have also prevented some North Carolina farmers from accessing their fields and livestock to assess damage, said Andrea Ashby, spokeswoman for the North Carolina Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services.
North Carolina emergency response officials tweeted that 23 truckloads of military meals and bottled water were delivered overnight to Wilmington, the state's eighth-largest city.
Bob Richling carries Iris Darden, 84, out of her flooded home as her daughter-in-law, Pam Darden, gathers her belongings in the aftermath of Hurricane Florence in Spring Lake, N.C., Monday, Sept. 17, 2018. "Please don't make yourself someone who needs to be rescued", he said even as rains stopped in several places after Florence moved on and the tired residents got a brief glimpse of sunshine on Monday.
Authorities say the number of deaths tied to Florence has risen to at least 31, the bulk of them in North Carolina. "Pay attention to the weather warnings and be ready to head for safer ground if you're asked to evacuate", Cooper warned residents during Sunday news conference.
Incredible footage shows the moment rescuers freed six dogs locked up in an outdoor cage in North Carolina during Hurricane Florence, as the water level began rapidly rising. "They are still is without power", said Braden Welsh, one of those behind the initiative.
Local artist Kevin Bryant praised the effort, saying "it's good to get some support".
The storm's aftermath created ideal conditions for snakes, he said, "so I will be watching my feet closely until things reach equilibrium again".
About 17,000 customers were without service in SC, mostly in northeastern SC near the North Carolina state line.
According to The Washington Post, the Marion County Sheriff's Office warned residents on Sunday: "We can not beg you enough to stay off the roads". State officials also were monitoring the ongoing threat from the breach of a Duke Energy coal ash landfill near Wilmington.
In Wilmington, North Carolina, one of the worst affected areas, abandoned cars were left to float in the rising waters on Saturday as residents fled and tried to ride out the worst of the hurricane.