Tuesday, August 31, 2010

1 PM Notice From Hyde County Re. Hurricane Earl

Hyde County Emergency Services Department
1223 Main St., PO Box
Swan Quarter NC 27885
(252) 926-4372 - Office
(252) 926-3901 - Fax
David Smitherman, Interim County Manager

Public Advisory #1
Date: Tuesday, August 31, 2010, 1 pm
Event: Hurricane Earl

Media Contact: Jamie Tunnell, jamietunnell@gmail.com, 252-925-0058

According to the National Weather Service, Hurricane Earl, a well-developed current category 4 hurricane, is forecast to impact the Outer Banks as it makes a NE turn off the coast. This will affect Hyde County with significant wind, rain, and storm surges that may flood low-lying areas of Hyde County, both on the Mainland and Ocracoke.

Local, county, and state Emergency Management representatives are aware and are monitoring this storm closely. They have decided to implement preparedness measures. They will meet this evening to review the latest forecast. Presently, they anticipate a mandatory evacuation for Ocracoke Island on Wednesday, September 1 beginning at 5 AM for all residents and visitors.

Swell from Earl will begin to arrive late today with seas building to small craft advisory levels by Wednesday. The large swell will enhance the rip current threat starting today. Based on the current track, seas up to 20 feet are probable in the coastal waters. Even if the track remains offshore, breakers on the Outer Banks could be up to 15 ft. Overwash issues are likely on the Outer Banks ocean side Thursday night after midnight, peaking between midnight and 6 AM Friday. High tide will be around 230 AM.

Before leaving, residents and guests in this area should take precautions such as moving cars and equipment to higher ground. Please pick up potential debris that could become unsecure during the storm.

People with medical needs and unique situations are urged to consider their options. Hyde County public safety services will cease after winds reach 50 mph sustained.

Again, there is not an evacuation in place at this time, but all are encouraged to make plans for their safety and security.

As seen in the past, hurricanes are unpredictable and can change with little notice. Residents and visitors need to remain vigilant and not let your guard down.

Hyde County Emergency Services continues to review the latest weather forecasts, is coordinating with the State and nearby counties, and advising citizens on possible actions to protect themselves and their property. Further updates will be issued after the 6 pm meeting.

Please make yourselves aware of the state ferry system’s schedule and road conditions before making travel plans during this time and after the storm has passed.

Storm Basis Preparation Initial Checklist:

* Check First Aid Kits/ Fire Extinguishers
* Obtain medicine and prescriptions
* Check and fuel vehicles and generators
* Obtain cash
* Make pet arrangements
* Pick up loose items around the yard
* Protect vulnerable portions of property
* Obtain non-perishable food and water for 3+ days (5+ recommended for Ocracoke)
* Obtain baby need or personal need items
* Check battery powered electronics and generators
* Assemble valuables and documents that cannot be replaced easily


  1. Anonymous2:21 PM

    Thank you! We are supposed to vacation there in about a week, and I could not find any up to date information about Earl until I found your blog.

  2. Anonymous2:28 PM

    Philip, how far inland do most residents go if there is a mandatory evacuation?

    Thanks for the updates. I tried to find something on line & your info was all I could locate.

    Know you must have 1,000 things on your "to-do list", so thanks for everything.

    Prayers are with all of you!

  3. Anonymous2:58 PM

    May God bless you all as you face this storm. I realize that you folks have faced these many times before, but we are concerned for you all, none-the-less. Be safe.


  4. About mandadtory evacuations -- officials can only force non-residents to leave the island during an evacuation. Many Ocracoke residents only leave if a major hurricane threatens a direct hit. I have only heard of a very few locals leaving for Hurricane Earl, though that may change by tomorrow. People generally go to stay with friends and relatives...maybe to the Raleigh, Chapel Hill area, or farther west.