North Carolina Governor Roy Cooper has declared a state of emergency for the entire state beginning at 8 a.m. Thursday morning. Cooper gave a briefing to the state Wednesday afternoon and said that “Irma is a strong storm. Wherever you live, you need to take this seriously and start preparing for impacts.”
Watch Cooper’s full press briefing below:
Cooper declared the state of emergency to ensure residents and government officials are properly prepared for the storm. Read the official declaration in the document below:
Irma is still hundreds of miles and days away from making landfall in the United States, but it’s currently at a Category 5 level, meaning it has winds in excess of 175 mph. The storm is currently pounding the Caribbean area and moving at around 15 mph. As of now, it’s projected to hit southern Florida and move along the east side of the state and up toward Georgia and the Carolinas. Some projects say it will make landfall in the Miami area some time around 8 a.m. Sunday. At its current conditions, Irma is the most powerful hurricane ever recorded in the Atlantic Ocean.
See the most latest projected Irma track in the map below:
North Carolina joins Florida, Georgia and South Carolina in declaring state of emergencies ahead of Irma. Officials in North Carolina are asking residents to review their emergency plans and take proper precautions.
“You can never be too prepared for an emergency,” Cooper said in a statement. “We know from Hurricane Matthew and Hurricane Harvey that storm tracks can shift quickly and that’s why North Carolina isn’t waiting to get ready. These tropical systems can pack a powerful punch and those who are prepared ahead of time will fare better.”
Being prepared means knowing your proper evacuation zone and also knowing the evacuation route. To see the mapped evacuation routes, click here.