Mandatory Evacuation Remains in Effect
as Maria Slowly Moves Out to Sea
Maria remained more or
less stationary for most of Wednesday, causing both soundside and
oceanside flooding, however improving conditions may be on the horizon
per the Wednesday afternoon update from the National Weather Service
Newport/Morehead City Office.
An elevated threat of
wind and storm surge remains in effect overnight, which may include
another foot or so of soundside inundation north of Ocracoke. A high
threat of rip currents will also be in effect until the end of the week.
A Tropical Storm
Warning remains in effect for Hatteras and Ocracoke Islands, however
these warnings may be discontinued by Wednesday night.
As of 5 p.m., Hurricane
Maria was located 205 miles ENE of Cape Hatteras with maximum sustained
winds of 75 mph. Maria was moving NNE at 7 mph, and this motion is
expected to continue tonight.
Maria is forecast to accelerate her east-northeastward trajectory on Thursday through Friday.
Evacuation for Hatteras Island
evacuation for visitors on Hatteras and Ocracoke Islands remains in
effect. Dare County officials will continue to closely monitor
conditions and coordinate with NCDOT to determine when road conditions
will allow reentry for Hatteras Island visitors.
“NCDOT is making
excellent progress clearing sand and water from Highway 12, but the
next high tide cycle is expected to bring additional ocean overwash and
soundside flooding that will create hazardous driving conditions in
some areas,” said Dare County Emergency Management Director Drew
Pearson. “While we all want visitors to return to Hatteras Island as
quickly as possible, safety is the top priority.”
The next update
regarding reentry for visitors to Hatteras Island will be issued no
later than 11:00 a.m. on Thursday morning, September 28 following a
meeting of the Dare County Control Group.
Evacuation for Ocracoke Island
For Ocracoke Island,
Hyde County officials will continue to coordinate with the NCDOT to
determine when the evacuation order for visitors can be lifted.
Officials will be evaluating the road conditions and the NCDOT Ferry
Division will conduct a test run tomorrow morning, if conditions allow.
The Ocracoke Deputy
Control Group will meet as soon as that information is available.
Officials are cautiously optimistic that ferry operations and road
conditions will permit reentry as soon as tomorrow afternoon.