Hurricane Matthew in North Carolina: Mandatory Evacuations Update

CARIBBEAN SEA - OCTOBER 3: In this NOAA handout image, taken by the GOES satellite at 1620 UTC shows Hurricane Matthew in the Caribbean Sea heading towards Jamacia, Haiti and Cuba on October 3, 2016. Matthew is a strong Category 4 hurricane, in the central Caribbean Sea and is poised to deliver a potentially catastrophic strike on Haiti. (Photo by NOAA via Getty Images)

Hurricane Matthew in the Caribbean Sea heading towards Jamacia, Haiti and Cuba on October 3, 2016. (Getty)

All eyes are on Florida as Hurricane Matthew closes in, and evacuations have been issued in Florida, Georgia, and South Carolina. But what about North Carolina? Have any mandatory evacuations been issued there?

Here’s what we know so far.

Evacuations aren’t as intense in North Carolina, as current predictions have the hurricane moving north up the coast to southern North Carolina before going back to sea, Greenville Online reported. However, hurricane force winds extend at least 60 miles from the eye of the storm, and tropical storm force winds extend over 100 miles out from the storm. So parts of North Carolina may still be in for a ride. And as recently as the 11 a.m. Friday advisory, the projected path showed the hurricane moving farther up the North Carolina coast than previously predicted:

A phased evacuation of Ocracoke Island was initiated after Hyde County issued a mandatory evacuation for island visitors on Wednesday. Then a mandatory evacuation for all residents began Thursday morning. However, Pilot Online reported on Wednesday that the mandatory evacuation for residents and non-resident property owners in Ocracoke Island was later suspended. The University of North Carolina-Wilmington also ordered students to evacuate no later than Thursday noon, reported. So far, as of the time of publication, those are the only mandatory evacuations in the state.

North Carolina Gov. Pat McCrory announced on Thursday late afternoon that the ferry schedule is changing due to Hurricane Matthew, with the Department of Transportation needing to move ships out of harm’s way in preparation for Hurricane Matthew. Ferries have evacuated more than 1,100 people from Ocracoke.  The Hatteras-Ocracoke route will have an altered schedule on Friday. According to Pilot Online on Thursday afternoon, the ferry schedule on Friday will be:

From Ocracoke: 4:30 a.m., 6:30 a.m., 7:30 a.m., 8:30 a.m., 9:30 a.m., 10:30 a.m., 11:30 a.m., 12:30 p.m., 1:30 p.m., 2:30 p.m., 3:30 p.m., 4:30 p.m., 5:30 p.m., 6:30 p.m., 7:30 p.m., 9:30 p.m., 10:30 p.m., 12:30 a.m.

From Hatteras: 5 a.m., 6 a.m., 7 a.m., 8 a.m., 9 a.m., 10 a.m., 11 a.m., noon, 1 p.m., 2 p.m., 3 p.m., 4 p.m., 5 p.m., 6 p.m., 8 p.m., 9 p.m., 11 p.m., midnight.

However, reported that the ferries might not run on Friday, so keep an eye on current conditions to see the latest news. The North Carolina Department of Transportation may revise its schedule as new forecasts come in.

As of the time of publication, officials did not expect any evacuations to be ordered for mainland Hyde County, unless the forecast changes, Pilot Online reported.

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