RALEIGH, N.C. (WNCN) – After touring Wilmington on Wednesday, Gov. Roy Cooper reminded North Carolinians of the threat Hurricane Dorian poses.
“The threat of significant storm damage to our state is very real,” Cooper said while delivering remarks at the Emergency Operations Center.
Several counties and areas have been evacuated ahead of Dorian.
“I urge residents to take these (evacuation) order, and this storm, serious,” Cooper said.
Counties like Dare, Currituck, and Carteret are being evacuated. New Hanover County beaches such as Wrightsville and Kure are also under an evacuation order.
Cooper ordered all of North Carolina’s barrier islands be evacuated on Tuesday.
Cooper said his team spoke with local officials in New Hanover County about what their next steps would be.
Cooper implored residents to not ride out the storm as it would also put first responders’ lives at risk.
A state-wide shelter is opening at Northgate Mall in Durham. Pets are allowed at the shelter in Durham, FEMA officials tell CBS 17.
Cooper said a shelter is opening in Clayton that will be able to house evacuees with specialized medical needs.
A total of 300 National Guard soldiers have been activated and water rescue teams have been deployed to staging areas, Cooper said.
“There is still time for you to get prepared. Do not wait,” Cooper said.
NCDOT’s Mike Trogdon said Morehead and Wilmington’s ports will fully close at 1 p.m. Wednesday.
Trogdon said the North Carolina Department of Transportation is preparing 1,000 chainsaws, more than 3,000 barricades and 2,700 high-water signs to deploy.
“Storm response and the safety of North Carolinians is our top priority,” Trogdon said. “We will deal with what Dorian brings us and make sure it will not impact the economy of North Carolina.”