Evacuations have been issued in parts of the Carolinas ahead of Hurricane Florence, which has strengthened back to a Category 4 with 140 mph winds. The storm is still expected to make landfall around Thursday, but hurricane paths are always a bit unpredictable. Read on for details about current evacuations for September 11, evacuation zones and maps for North Carolina in 2018, as Hurricane Florence approaches. This is a developing story.
Current Evacuation Orders (September 11)
Here are the current mandatory evacuation orders in North Carolina, as reported by Weather.com and other local sources as of the evening of September 11. Stay tuned to your local media for updates, as evacuation orders can change quickly. Note that the “Know Your Zone” designations are set up in Virginia and South Carolina, not North Carolina. (Note: Some areas listed below might also be in South Carolina.)
- Atlantic Beach – mandatory evacuation
- Beaufort County – voluntary evacuation for the entire county; mandatory evacuation of low-lying, substandard housing or mobile homes
- Bertie County – voluntary evacuation
- Brunswick County: mandatory evacuation for unincorporated areas and Holden Beach visitors, and Oak Island visitors; voluntary evacuation for residents and for Leland and Navassa
- Carteret County – mandatory evacuation for Atlantic Beach, Emerald Isle, Indian Beach, and Pine Knoll Shores
- Craven County – mandatory evacuation for the entire county
- Currituck County – mandatory evacuation for Currituck Outer Banks (Corolla and Carova)
- Dare County – mandatory evacuation for county
- Emerald Isle (Beach) – mandatory evacuation
- Holden – visitors must evacuate
- Hyde County – mandatory evacuation for county
- Indian Beach – mandatory evacuation
- Kure Beach – mandatory evacuation
- New Hanover County – voluntary evacuation for entire county; mandatory evacuation for UNCW, Carolina Beach, Kure Beach, Wrightsville Beach
- North Topsail Beach – mandatory evacuation
- Oak Island – visitors must evacuate
- Ocracoke Beach – mandatory evacuation
- Onslow/Pender Counties – voluntary evacuation of Surf City
- Onslow County – mandatory evacuation of unincorporated areas and Topsail Beach
- Pamlico – mandatory evacuation for county
- Pender County – voluntary evacuation of low-lying, substandard housing or mobile homes\
- Pine Knoll Shores – mandatory evacuation
- Surf City – voluntary evacuation
- Tyrrell County – mandatory evacuation of entire county
- University of North Carolina at Wilmington – mandatory evacuation
- Wrightsville Beach – mandatory evacuation
If you’re on a barrier island in North Carolina, you’re being asked to leave before the dangerous storm arrives.
Inland residents should prepare for Florence, Gov. Cooper said, as the system may stall and lead to power outages and flooding.
What To Do If You’re Evacuating
According to the State of North Carolina, you should do the following if you are considering evacuating:
- Stay tuned to local media.
- Fill your car with gasoline and only take one vehicle if possible. You might want to fill your car up soon, as gas shortages are not unheard of during hurricane evacuations.
- Leave early so you don’t meet heavy traffic or get caught in a traffic jam during bad weather.
- Map your path, paying attention to police recommendations, and let your friends know where you’re going. Ask your neighbors if they need a ride.
- Plan to stay at a friend’s home or a motel or hotel in a safe area. Shelters are a last resort choice.
- Take any emergency kits for you and your family, including important papers, money and extra cash since banks might be closed, and medicine.
- Lock your doors and windows before you leave. Turn off your water, gas, and power, and unplug small appliances.
Evacuation Routes & Map in North Carolina
In North Carolina, many interstates and major highways to and from the coast can accommodate heavy traffic, which allow for better evacuations. Hurricane Florence is currently expected to begin affecting North Carolina on Wednesday evening. Below is the main hurricane evacuation map for North Carolina. You can view it in a larger size here. When you’re on the road, routes will be indicated by circular blue roadside signs.
According to StarNewsOnline, NCDOT is recommending that drivers take designated evacuation routes and not back roads. Designated evacuation routes include Interstate 40, I-40, U.S. 74-76, U.S. 117, N.C. 211 and N.C. 210.
You can get real-time information about North Carolina’s roadways and congestion on the map here. And listen to NOAA Weather Radio or your local stations for more evacuation details.
Some bridges to beach towns may close early depending on the weather, according to StarNewsOnline:
- Sunset Beach police will close the high-rise bridge if sustained winds reach 45 to 50 mph.
- In Surf City and Wrightsville Beach, bridges will only close if a mandatory evacuation is issued.
- Snow’s Cut Bridge into Carolina Beach might close if sustained winds reach 45 mph (this is what officials have done in the past.)
- Cape Fear Memorial Bridge will only be closed by DOT to marine traffic if sustained winds reach 40 mph. But it won’t likely be closed to vehicles, Star News Online noted.
City & County Specific Evacuation Routes
If you are in Duck, North Carolina, the typical evacuation route is “NC 12 (south) to US 158 (west) towards Elizabeth City, NC and Norfolk, VA.”
The hurricane hotline in Brunswick County is 1-800-522-2366. You can register for emergency notifications here.
In Beaufort County, North Carolina (and Washington, North Carolina) U.S. 17 and U.S. 264 are typically used to evacuate the coast. Traffic can get heavy, so leave early if possible.
If you are in Onslow County, you can find a map of shelters here.
Dare County has two evacuation routes: Highway 64/264 West and Highway 158 North, according to Kill Devil Hills, North Carolina. Residents are encouraged to use Highway 64/264 West if evacuating from Hatteras Island, Nags Head, and Roanoke Island. Traffic can back up on the Highway 158 route because it will merge with traffic from the Outer Banks and other surrounding counties. The 64/264 route tends to have less congestion, Dare County Emergency Management advises.
Here is Dare County’s evacuation map:
North Carolina’s travel information line is 511, giving details about travel conditions and major closures or wrecks.
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