Governor Pat McCrory was in Wilmington today warning those along the
coast and beyond to prepare for Tropical Storm Arthur. The storm, which formed
off the coast of Florida and is making its way north, is expected to strengthen
into a category one hurricane by the time it reaches North Carolina's coast on
Thursday. There is a tropical storm warning for the entire North Carolina coast
in effect now.
"While we all want to enjoy a fun Fourth of July weekend with
friends and family, our highest priority should be safety during the storm," Governor
McCrory said. "I
encourage all of our coastal residents and visitors to take necessary
precautions, listen to local media and use good judgment throughout the
duration of the storm."
The governor was joined by Department of Transportation Secretary
Tony Tata and North Carolina Emergency Management Director Mike Sprayberry at
the New Hanover County Emergency Operations Center to give an update on the
forecast and storm preparations.
Governor Pat McCrory has signed two Executive Orders related to
the storm. The first declares a State of Emergency for 25 coastal and
adjoining inland counties to prepare for the possibility of any damage,
including coastal flooding, caused by Tropical Storm Arthur. The
proclamation authorizes the use of state government resources to assist city
and county governments in storm response. The second is a waiver of
various transportation rules and regulations in order to quickly restore power
and expedite any debris removal.
The North Carolina Emergency Operations Center (EOC) has been
monitoring the situation and will activate Thursday morning with additional
personnel on site. The State Emergency Response Team is on standby, ready to
assist if needed. SERT partners include representatives from the
departments of Public Safety, Transportation, Health and Human Services and
Agriculture, as well as the State Wildlife Division, Office of Emergency
Medical Services, the Civil Air Patrol, the N.C. National Guard, the State
Highway Patrol, Adult Correction and Swift Water Rescue teams.
"While the current forecast does not indicate Arthur will cause
major damage, we are taking this storm very seriously," said Emergency
Management Director Mike Sprayberry. "Emergency management personnel, in
conjunction with our federal, state and local partners, are ready to support
the counties in preparation, response and recovery efforts as needed."
Hurricane and tropical storm watches have been posted for the
North Carolina coast. Coastal areas may see periods of heavy rains and
gusty winds, rip currents, heavy surf and moderate beach erosion. Portions of
the Outer Banks may experience periods of hurricane force winds as the storm
The North Carolina National Guard (NCNG) will have soldiers on
standby ready to provide direct assistance to state emergency managers, the
highway patrol and first responders. Guardsmen are staged at the North
Carolina National Guard armory in Kinston and will deploy if required.
NCNG has high water vehicles and helicopters, and can provide power generation,
medical, communication and shelter support, as well as transport supplies if
The North Carolina State Highway Patrol has placed all essential
personnel on stand-by and is ready for deployment at a moment's notice.
Troopers will be monitoring all major highways and will be assisting our
DOT, county Emergency Management officials and local partners.
The North Carolina Department of Transportation is keeping a close
eye on Tropical Storm Arthur and making preparations to respond quickly if needed.
"Our crews are working diligently and