Onslow County has sent out rescue teams to help residents trapped in their homes or stuck on roadways.
To respond more quickly to people in danger, county officials are urging residents to stay off the roadways.
"The more vehicles on the roadway, the more clutter that's going to make," Jordan said. "By the roadways being clear of vehicles, it will allow us to really get out there and save our citizens."
As of 10:30 a.m., the county had received numerous reports of flooded areas, including parts Gum Branch Road and Weston Boulevard, Jordan said. There have also been reports of debris blocking roadways, downed trees, structural damage and widespread power outages.
About 70 people were rescued from a hotel in Jacksonville after its roof collapsed overnight, according to city officials. Jordan says the county rescued a family from their home after a tree fell into it and has rescued people who were stuck on roadways.
The county has also received reports of other structural damage, including water damage at White Oak High School, Jordan said.
The county is under a tornado watch until today 5 p.m.