What started as a tropical storm has built into what is expected to be a category one hurricane. Experts expect the hurricane to touch the U.S. late Tuesday evening/early Wednesday morning. The hurricane’s track shows that it will first hit Florida and then travel up the coast, eventually reaching North Carolina. By the time Idalia hits North Carolina, it will likely have weakened significantly, but it will still bring with it heavy storm weather.
Hurricane Idalia is expected to officially hit North Carolina on Wednesday evening.
While experts are saying the hurricane will be weaker by the time it reaches North Carolina, they still anticipate heavy rainfall and strong winds in the state. The further up north in the state you are, the less rain there is to expect, but if you are further south, there is an anticipation of four-plus inches of rain.
At that time, the wind is expected to be traveling between 20-40 miles per hour. This is significantly lower than what the wind will be at, as when the hurricane hits the coast of Florida, the wind is expected to be traveling at 125 miles per hour. The wind in North Carolina being 40 miles per hour is not expected to cause extreme damage or power outages, but there is still a possibility. Experts are advising to still remain cautious.
The wind and rain are expected to calm and pass through North Carolina by the end of Thursday night, into Friday morning.
The areas of the state expected to be hit the hardest are along the coast, as well as Fayetteville and the Sandhills (including Wayne and Sampson Counties). The further you are from these areas, the less rain you will get.
Reports say there is still a risk of tropical tornadoes, but the risk is low. The risk is mostly concentrated around the coast as well. While these unusual tornadoes tend to be smaller, shorter, and weaker, meteorologists advise taking the necessary precautions to prepare.
Even though the hurricane will likely be less severe when it reaches North Carolina, preparation is still key. We advise getting non-perishables and water, as well as making sure the gas tank in your car is full in case there is a need to evacuate.