A High Wind Warning, Coastal Flood Warning and High Surf Advisory are currently in effect for Dare County as a coastal storm moves through our area. Strong winds, heavy rain, large waves, and life-threatening coastal flooding will bring significant impacts with conditions expected to deteriorate throughout Saturday afternoon and into Sunday. Persistent high winds with gusts up to 60-70 mph have the potential to cause widespread power outages.
As of 9:00 a.m. on Satruday, N.C. Highway 12 remained passable throughout, however ocean overwash was starting to affect residences and roads in Avon along Ocean View Drive, and in northern Rodanthe
Per Dare County Emergency Management, now is the time to make final preparations. Secure loose outdoor items and consider moving your vehicle to higher ground if in an area prone to ocean or soundside flooding.
“Starting with the high tide [Saturday] morning, we are expecting flooding,” said Meteorologist Shane Kearns of the National Weather Service Newport / Morehead City office in an earlier interview. “The unique part of this storm is that it’s going to be moving very slowly. We’re going to see strong winds over a 48-hour period, so that’s going to cause the elevated impacts we’re currently looking at.”
The next high tide is around 9:30 a.m. – 10:00 a.m.
The nor’easter is expected to peak on midday Saturday, and has the potential for storm surge inundation of 2 to 4 feet above ground level, with locally higher amounts possible for oceanside areas of the islands, and areas adjacent to the southern Pamlico Sound. Offshore peak wave heights of 15-24 ft. are also forecast with the coastal storm, as well as 4-6 inches of additional rainfall for Hatteras and Ocracoke islands.
For information about current road conditions from the North Carolina Department of Transportation (NCDOT), visit drivenc.gov or dial 511. When dialing 511 on weekdays from 8:15 a.m. to 7:45 p.m., weekends from 8:15 a.m. to 4:45 p.m., callers speak directly with an operator who can answer traffic and travel-related questions. Overnight and during emergencies, travelers should go to DriveNC.gov for the latest travel information. For real-time travel information, visit DriveNC.gov or follow NCDOT on social media.
For more information on the local forecast, visit www.weather.gov/mhx for weather information, or the National Weather Service office in Newport / Morehead City’s Facebook page at https://www.facebook.com/NWSMoreheadCity/.
The Island Free Press will also provide updates on the storm and road conditions as soon as they are available.