Nearly 150 people trapped in New Bern, NC, as small city is battered by Florence

As Florence made landfall on the coast of North Carolina Friday, a city about a hundred miles north was among the worst-hit areas so far, with about 150 people stranded and 200 already rescued, officials said.

"We're making every effort to expeditiously as we can to get these folks to a shelter," New Bern Mayor Dana Outlaw said on "Today."

"Be patient, we're on the way. We will get you rescued — all 150. So just bear with us because we have to be so careful that our first responders are not put in harm’s way in this type of weather," Outlaw said, later adding that many people would have to be rescued by boat.

"A lot of our staff have not had sleep for 36 hours now. They're very tired but they’re very tenacious. They're going to make it happen. It's going to happen. We're going to get these folks back in a safe shelter," Outlaw said.

New Bern, North Carolina
New Bern, North Carolina

"We have 2 out-of-state FEMA teams here for swift water rescue. More are on the way to help us. WE ARE COMING TO GET YOU. You may need to move up to the second story, or to your attic, but WE ARE COMING TO GET YOU," said a tweet from the City of New Bern.

RELATED: Hurricane Florence makes landfall

New Bern Police issued a 24-hour curfew starting at 7 a.m. Friday as emergency officials rushed to pluck people from their flooded homes.

A City of New Bern tweet said residents could expect the potentially-deadly mix of high winds, storm surge, rainfall and flooding.

Near two-thirds of the residents in the city of about 30,000 were without power, according to the latest numbers from the City of New Bern. More than 370,000 customers in the entire state are without power.

As the Category 1 storm made landfall near Wrightsville Beach at 7:15 a.m. Friday, the National Weather Service announced tornado warnings in a swath of North Carolina, including New Bern.