The Ocracoke Village Fire Department was used as a command center Friday on Ocracoke Island, North Carolina, in the aftermath of Hurricane Dorian
The island with a population of about 940 is accessible only by boat or air. Cooper said medical and search and rescue teams were on the way.
Hurricane Dorian made landfall on Cape Hatteras, north of Ocracoke Island, at around 9 a.m. Friday as the storm, which devastated parts of the Bahamas and killed at least 43 people earlier this week, moved away from the U.S. East Coast, forecasters and officials said.
The storm also caused damage on Cape Hatteras and other parts of the Outer Banks, leaving them without power, Cooper said.
Residents of Ocracoke Island who stayed behind described flooding on a scale they had never seen before.
"The wall of water just came rushing through the island from the sound side. And it just started looking like a bathtub, very quickly," Steve Harris, who has lived on the island for most of the last 19 years, told The Associated Press.
"We went from almost no water to 4 to 6 feet in a matter of minutes,” Harris said.
He lives on the third floor of a condo building but lost his car to the storm, and he told the AP that people there were getting around by boat.