As Florida begins the task of cleaning up the destruction left in Hurricane Ian’s wake, Governor Roy Cooper is reminding North Carolinians to expect heavy rains, wind gusts between 40 to 50 mph for Friday and possible power outages.
“Landslides are a threat in our mountains and there’s a chance of tornadoes statewide. Coastal flooding and gusty winds are likely as the storm passes through. This storm is still dangerous,” Cooper warned during a Thursday press conference.
State emergency management officials believe the greatest threat for flash flooding is along the NC/SC border and in portions of the southern mountains. Officials warn that heavy rain could create the potential for landslides and river flooding in Western North Carolina.
NC Department of Transportation Sec. Eric Boyette said his agency has spent the week getting ready for whatever Ian leaves behind.
“We have about 1,500 chainsaws, 11,000 barricades and emergency signs and ample fuel to respond,” Boyette said. “We also have specialized equipment ready to clear debris and about 1,400 trucks, 400 backhoes and loaders and 200 motor graders to respond.”
Road construction projects across the state are expected to pause on Friday due to severe weather conditions.
“We want to make sure everyone stays off the roads in the storm affected areas. Please don’t drive through roads with standing water,” advised Boyette. “And never drive around barricades. The barricades are there to protect you.”
Once the storm has passed, officials will assess what repair work is needed across the state and what assets can be sent to aid in Florida’s recovery.
The latest NC Emergency Management forecast can be found at https://www.readync.gov/weather.
Click below to hear Gov. Roy Cooper discuss how to prepare for Ian: