Florence Approaching, Winds Expected To Pick Up This Morning
As of 5 am, the center of Hurricane Florence is located approximately 185 miles due southeast of Emerald Isle. The Category 2 storm currently has maximum winds of 110 mph and is moving northwest at 15 mph. Winds in Emerald Isle are currently 15 mph +/-, and rainfall has not yet begun.
Florence is currently forecast to make landfall near Wrightsville Beach tomorrow morning around 5 am with winds of 105 mph, which means Emerald Isle would be in the most dangerous northeast quadrant. The eye of Florence is currently forecast to pass approximately 40 miles due south of Emerald Isle at approximately 9 pm Thursday.
Tropical storm force winds are expected to begin in Emerald Isle by mid-morning, and continue into early Saturday morning. Hurricane force winds are expected to begin in Emerald Isle late this afternoon, and continue into late Friday morning.
Significant wind, storm surge, and rainfall are expected in Emerald Isle, and the initial rain bands are closing in on Emerald Isle. Hurricane force winds, storm surge of up to 13 feet, and rainfall totals up to 30 inches are forecast, and specific impacts will depend on exactly where Florence makes landfall, where it goes after, and how fast it moves. Florence is expected to slow down and continue to impact Emerald Isle all day Friday and into Saturday.
Mandatory Evacuation Order in Effect
Emerald Isle is under a MANDATORY EVACUATION ORDER, and everyone should have already left Emerald Isle or should be sheltered in place.
Emerald Isle Bridge Will Close at 7 am on Thursday, Curfew In Effect
Due to the significant danger posed by Florence, Emerald Isle will be under a curfew beginning at 7 am this morning. The Emerald Isle bridge will be closed at that time. No one will be allowed to enter Emerald Isle after 7 am today until further notice.
The curfew will remain in effect for the duration of Hurricane Florence, until further notice. During the curfew, it is illegal for anyone to leave their own property and travel anywhere within Emerald Isle.
After the storm ends, Town officials will assess the conditions in Emerald Isle and make decisions based on public safety. Due to the fact that Florence is expected to stall somewhat, and the projected significant impacts on Emerald Isle on both Thursday and Friday, it is possible that the bridge will be closed for multiple days, and perhaps longer depending on the impacts on the ground.
The curfew will be lifted and the bridge will be reopened only when Town officials have determined that it is safe for property owners, residents, and the general public to enter the Town. This information will be disseminated on the Town's various digital platforms listed below when these decisions have been made.
Important Info - Town Facilities and Services
All Town facilities are closed until further notice. Police, Fire, and EMS services will continue to be provided as long as they can respond safely, however, individuals remaining in Emerald Isle must realize that emergency personnel may not respond during the height of the storm's impacts or if damage makes it impossible for them to reach you.
The Town works hard to keep our residents, property owners, and visitors well-informed, and offers several platforms.
The Town will provide frequent additional updates on Hurricane Florence (as warranted) in the coming days. To receive the most current information from the Town of Emerald Isle, please:
- visit the Town's website at https://www.emeraldisle-nc.org/ ,
- check the Town's Facebook page at Town of Emerald Isle, NC,
- follow the Town's Twitter feed: @townemeraldisle,
- sign up for the Town's email newsletter at https://www.emeraldisle-nc.org/email-text-notifications ,
- sign up for text message alerts at https://www.emeraldisle-nc.org/email-text-notifications , and/or
- download the Emerald Isle APP at Google Play and The APP Store (search for "emerald isle nc") and enable "push" notifications.