Friday, August 26, 2011

Hurricane Irene: Evacuations in North Carolina


"Evacuations in N.C. as Irene Approaches"


"Thousands were fleeing an exposed strip of coastal villages and beaches off the North Carolina coast and dozens of Navy ships were ordered to leave their port to the north Thursday as Irene approached, threatening to become the first major hurricane to hit the East Coast in seven years.

An evacuation order took effect for an estimated 150,000 tourists in coastal Dare County hours after forecasters issued a hurricane watch for much of the state's coast. Meanwhile, emergency officials all the way to New England were scrambling to get ready.

Irene could hit North Carolina's Outer Banks on Saturday afternoon with winds around 115 mph. It's predicted to chug up the East Coast, dumping rain from Virginia to New York City before a much-weakened form reaches land in Connecticut.
Dare County officials were considering making thousands of year-round residents leave, too. "It wouldn't behoove anyone to stay in these circumstances," Dare County emergency management spokeswoman Sharon Sullivan said. "Businesses are boarding up. Nobody can guarantee their safety."

The Navy ordered the Second Fleet in southeastern Virginia, including at Norfolk Naval Station, to leave so ships would be safe from the approaching hurricane. Thursday's order applied to 64 ships in the area, some of which were already at sea.
The Navy, which moves it ships when storms can produce winds of 50 knots and a five- to seven-foot storm surge, said ships at sea can better weather storms. The move will also help protect piers from being damaged. (...)"




in Time

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