NEW HANOVER COUNTY, NC (WWAY) — A mandatory evacuation for all beach towns in New Hanover County is in effect.
At a Wednesday morning briefing, county officials said the community’s safety is their primary concern.
Specifically, storm surge is the biggest worry.
Emergency Management Director Steven Still says they are expecting anywhere from four to seven feet of surge.
Still also urges people to be sheltered in place by 8 p.m. before conditions get too bad for them and for first responders.
“When we start to see the increase of winds, whether that’s peak gusts of hurricane or tropical storm force winds, it’s dangerous for us to put our public safety officials out in those areas,” Still said. “There’s no guidance that tells us that we will absolutely shut down public safety at that time.”
Still says people should not base their decision to evacuate on how long it could take to get back in their homes.
Rescue crews are going door to door in low-lying neighborhoods to make sure those people have a plan.
As of midday Wednesday, there were nine evacuees at Blair Elementary and 40 at Codington Elementary.
There’s also a shelter for evacuees inland at North Gate Mall in Durham.