RALEIGH, N.C. (WAVY) — North Carolina Gov. Pat McCrory on Monday declared a state of emergency for 66 counties in the state.
McCrory made the declaration so that farmers can get assistance to expedite their harvest. He announced the state of emergency during a news conference updating the state of preparations for Hurricane Matthew.
“We’re taking this storm extremely seriously and again our goal is to be over prepared and hopefully underwhelmed,” McCrory stated in Monday’s news conference.
“While we do not yet know how Hurricane Matthew will impact North Carolina, we do know that we can expect some form of impacts on our state,” said Governor McCrory. “Already, we’ve seen substantial flooding in eastern and central parts of the state from recent rain events, and many areas are already saturated. We are taking this storm seriously, and I encourage residents and visitors do the same.”
The Red Cross also urged residents in North Carolina on Monday to prepare as the powerful storm looms in the Caribbean Sea.
Matthew, the most powerful Atlantic storm since 2007, is threatening to work its way up the east coast toward North Carolina — and possibly over top of the Outer Banks.
Matthew is moving through the Caribbean, bringing the threat of life-threatening to Haiti — with some areas forecast to receive as much as 40 inches of rainfall.
Current models are largely unclear on exactly what Matthew’s track will be once it passes through the Caribbean Sea.
Despite the lack of clarity among the forecasting models, the Red Cross advises that it is better for residents to get ready now.
“The better prepared folks are, the safer they will be should Hurricane Matthew impact our coastline,” said Barry Porter, regional chief executive officer of the Red Cross in Eastern NC. “The Red Cross encourages residents to build a kit of necessities, ready their homes, and make a plan with their families.”
The Red Cross released a list Monday that residents can use to get ready:
- Listen to a NOAA Weather Radio (Available on the Red Cross Store) for critical information from the National Weather Service (NWS).
- Check your disaster supplies. Replace or restock as needed.
- Bring in anything that can be picked up by the wind (bicycles, lawn furniture).
- Close your windows, doors and hurricane shutters. If you do not have hurricane shutters, close and board up all windows and doors with plywood.
- Turn your refrigerator and freezer to the coldest setting. Keep them closed as much as possible so that food will last longer if the power goes out.
- Turn off propane tank.
- Unplug small appliances.
- Fill your car’s gas tank.
- Create a hurricane evacuation plan with members of your household. Planning and practicing your evacuation plan minimizes confusion and fear during the event.
- Find out about your community’s hurricane response plan. Plan routes to local shelters, register family members with special medical needs and make plans for your pets to be cared for.
- Obey evacuation orders. Avoid flooded roads and washed out bridges.
- Download the free Red Cross Emergency App
Stay with WAVY News 10 for the latest updates on Hurricane Matthew’s track.