RALEIGH – The N.C. Department of Transportation is helping with evacuations along the coast, checking emergency supplies and readying equipment and personnel ahead of Hurricane Dorian.
North Carolina is expected to begin feeling the effects of the storm’s heavy rainfall and dangerous winds as early as Wednesday night.
Governor Roy Cooper on Tuesday issued a mandatory state evacuation order for vulnerable coastal areas. The order applies to barrier islands on the coast. The governor is urging people to follow the forecast, heed the advice of local emergency officials and make immediate preparations.
The N.C. Department of Transportation has started readying its supplies, such as chain saws, high water signs and other barricades, and assigning employees to be prepared to clear roads of fallen trees and make emergency repairs.
Below is a rundown of the department’s storm preparations:
The N.C. Department of Transportation’s Ferry Division is assisting with Hyde County’s mandatory evacuation for visitors of Ocracoke Island. The division had evacuated 984 passengers and transported 498 vehicles from Ocracoke Island between 5 a.m. and 3 p.m. Tuesday. The Ferry Division will help evacuate Ocracoke Island residents starting at 5 a.m. Wednesday. The ferries serving Ocracoke will be suspended Wednesday afternoon.
Ferry updates can be found on NCDOT’s twitter feeds, which are located on this website. The governor has waived ferry fees for the evacuation.
NCDOT staff in all 100 counties have readied supplies for road clearing efforts, shoulder repairs and pipe replacements that can be made quickly following Hurricane Dorian. They also have fueled vehicles and cleared storm drainage catch basins of any debris. A total of 2,415 NCDOT employees across all 14 highway divisions are ready to respond. The agency is shifting some of its resources to the coast and eastern North Carolina where they may be needed most.
Division of Motor Vehicles
As a precaution, the division will close the driver license office in Nags Head, starting Wednesday and lasting through Friday. The DMV’s Southport mobile unit will be closed on Wednesday and Thursday. The Barco and Camp Lejeune mobile units also will close Thursday. More closures are anticipated and can be found on the office locations page of the official NCDMV website at MyNCDMV.gov. Many DMV services, including renewing driver licenses, ordering duplicate ID cards or renewing vehicle registration, can be done online.
NCDOT is readying flight teams and charging batteries to deploy drones and capture images and video of flooding and other damage after Dorian has passed. The department will share the images with federal, state and local authorities, so they can monitor conditions in real time and help keep the traveling public safe.
As a reminder, people should not fly drones before, during or after a major event, because doing so could interfere with emergency respond operations.
The department is also monitoring all 72 public airports in the state to determine which facilities emergency responders and others can use after the storm.
Officials at the Global TransPark – an industrial park in Kinston and a division of the NCDOT– are coordinating with federal, state and local emergency management officials for any hangars or office space they may need for response and recovering operations associated with Hurricane Dorian.
Travel and emergency updates
The latest information can be found on the state’s Hurricane Dorian website; on Twitter @NCEmergency and Facebook. Visit DriveNC.gov for traffic conditions statewide. Real-time traffic, weather and preparedness information is also available via the ReadyNC mobile app, available for free for iPhones and Android devices.