As Hurricane Dorian’s track still looks like it will affect North Carolina, the state’s coast is the most at risk. But the Triangle could also feel effects of the storm later this week.
The Tuesday advisory from the National Weather Service in Raleigh says Hurricane Dorian is expected to impact the area from Thursday into early Friday morning. As of 6 p.m. Tuesday, Thursday’s forecast for central North Carolina included the possibility of heavy rainfall. And that could mean flooding in low-lying spots or poor drainage areas.
Gusty winds may also uproot trees and produce isolated power outages in the region, the NWS in Raleigh reported.
Gov. Roy Cooper issued an executive order Tuesday, saying that the state is under an “imminent threat” from Dorian, which is expected to pass or make landfall “on or about” Wednesday evening. While the storm will be felt hardest on the coast, there are steps Triangle residents can to take to prepare for it.
State leaders urged North Carolina residents to get their emergency kits ready now, and to have food and water to last several days.
“We know that rain, storm surge and winds will all be a significant threat for this event, particularly east of I-95 with the greatest hazards being along our coastline,” said Mike Sprayberry, director of emergency management at the N.C. Department of Public Safety.
When the storm does arrive, here’s what’s expected in the region, according to the NWS:
▪ Wind gusts of 40 to 60 miles per hour. Highest wind risk is from Thursday afternoon into Friday morning.
▪ High winds expected along and east of Interstate 95 could blow down trees and power lines. In the Triangle, isolated trees and power lines could be blown down as well.
▪ Heavy rainfall of 4 to 8 inches expected, primarily south and east of Raleigh.
▪ From Raleigh toward the west, 2 inches or less of rain is expected.
▪ Flooding in the Triangle is possible, especially in urban areas, Thursday through midday Friday.
Barrier islands were ordered to evacuate Wednesday. Residents who don’t live in evacuation areas should have a place to stay, just in case, Cooper said.
No shelters have been announced yet, but in the Triangle, Northgate Mall in Durham will serve as a “mega shelter” for coastal evacuees.
Emergency websites and alerts
State leaders are urging people to pay attention to their local emergency information sources.
▪ Orange County Emergency Management: Register for Ready Orange alerts at ocalertsnc.com or by texting your zip code to 888777. Text “OCStorm” to 888777 for weather specific alerts.
▪ N.C. Department of Public Safety: ncdps.gov/dorian2019
▪ FEMA hurricane preparedness: ready.gov/hurricanes
Buses ready to help
GoTriangle, the Triangle’s public transportation authority, announced Tuesday it is preparing to help with evacuations and relief supply delivery if needed. GoTriangle will be ready to deploy buses quickly if needed for evacations, according to a news release.
“Our core mission is to get people safely where they need to go,” GoTriangle Interim President and CEO Shelley Blake Curran said in the release.
“During emergency situations, we’re here to help get our neighbors to safety, and we are proud to work together with state and local response teams to make sure our community is prepared and that everyone has a connection to shelters, medical centers and other places they need to go,” Curran said.
They will also help with any relief to the coast, as GoTriangle has done after previous hurricanes.
How to prepare for a hurricane
▪ Prepare your emergency kit of food, water and supplies.
▪ Determine where you would go and how you would get there if you have to evacuate.
▪ Check flashlights, generators and battery-powered equipment.
▪ Clear loose and clogged rain gutters and downspouts.
Check your home for flooding risk
You can search by street and address to find out the risk of flooding where you live or work: flood.nc.gov/ncflood/
Hurricane emergency kit supplies
Here’s what you need to have in your emergency kit.
▪ Enough non-perishable food and a gallon of water per person per day to last three to seven days.
▪ Copies of insurance papers and identification sealed in a watertight plastic bag.
▪ First aid kit
▪ Weather radio and batteries
▪ Supply of prescription medicines
▪ Sleeping bag or blankets
▪ Changes of clothes
▪ Toothbrush, toothpaste, soap, deodorant and other hygiene items
▪ Cash or checkbook
▪ Pet supplies, including food, water, leashes, bedding, medications, ID tags, muzzle, first aid kit and vaccination records
▪ A plan for those under your care who are unable to help themselves.
Source: Wake County