- Holden Beach – renters, vacationers and guests must vacate by 7 p.m. on Saturday
- Ocean Isle Beach – renters, vacationers and guests were to vacate at noon on Saturday
- Hatteras Island – visitors were to begin evacuating Saturday at noon; residents and owners must evacuate on Sunday from 6 a.m.
- Ocracoke Island – Mandatory visitor evacuation was put in place at noon Friday; residents had to start evacuating at 6 a.m. on Saturday
Isaias, a Category 1 hurricane, is expected to hit North Carolina as early as Monday and have its largest impact Monday night and Tuesday, North Carolina officials said. The latest model from the National Hurricane Center shows Isaias winds hitting the area before 8 p.m. Monday, and the storm is expected to produce heavy rains and flash urban flooding in the Carolinas, “especially in low-lying, poorly drained areas.” Minor flooding of the river is also possible, according to the center.
The state said on Friday it was already seeing an impact from the storm system, with an increased risk of dangerous backflow currents along the coast.
The impacted potential prompted North Carolina Gov. Roy Cooper to declare a state of emergency on Friday, allowing trucks and supplies to be distributed to areas that may need help making facing the impending storm.
“While the trail and arrival of the hurricane may still change, now is the time for North Carolinians to prepare,” Cooper said in a press release. “Hurricane preparations will be different given the COVID-19 pandemic, and families should keep this in mind as they prepare. “
North Carolina Emergency Management has 75 rangers and offshore vehicles on standby, according to the press release, and the state Department of Transportation also has 1,800 employees, 1,550 equipment and 1,000 chainsaws on hold. .
Authorities have encouraged residents to take shelter with family and friends as the storm passes due to the ongoing pandemic. There were 122,148 cases of the coronavirus in the state as of Friday, and more than 1,200 are currently hospitalized.
Shelter will be provided as a last option for those who must evacuate the path of the storm, officials said, but with various regulations in place to handle the spread of COVID-19. People looking for shelter will be screened for symptoms of COVID-19, and those who have symptoms will be sent to “non-collective shelters” where they can be isolated. Shelters will offer fewer spaces to maintain social distancing measures, and officials said people should be prepared to bring their own bedding.
The Center said hurricane conditions and storm surges will continue in the northwestern Bahamas until Saturday evening, and Florida will begin to experience these effects on Saturday and Sunday. At 11 a.m. on Saturday, Florida’s east coast is under a mix of tropical storm and hurricane warnings, and Georgia’s southeast coast is under tropical storm watch, according to the National Hurricane Center. The water can rise between 2 and 4 feet above ground level over the weekend.
“Preparations to protect life and property must be rushed to completion,” the center said in its latest update.