Jacksonville hotel evacuated after building compromised during Florence

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WILMINGTON, NC (WWAY) — The City of Jacksonville says about 60 people have been evacuated from a hotel after hurricane force winds threatened the structural integrity of the building.

The 62 people, including an infant, children and their pets, have been taken to the Jacksonville Center for Public Safety while a solution is sought for where they can stay. No one was hurt.

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At about 12:45 a.m., Jacksonville 911 got a call about damage to the Triangle Motor Inn at 246 Wilmington Hwy. An officer responding found a basketball-sized hole in a corner room. Firefighters later found what the city says was life-threatening damage to the structure. Cinder blocks that were part of the structure were crumbling in some places and residents were still in many of the rooms.

Hurricane force winds were a challenge, and police and firefighters had to force their way into some rooms.

Portions of the roof were collapsed, allowing rain to flood some of the rooms.

Using a host of vehicles, Jacksonville Fire and Emergency Services transported many of the guests. Some drove their own vehicles with police escorts.

The occupants have been placed in a temporary space in the Center for Public Safety while work is underway to find shelter for the residents.