CHARLOTTE, N.C. (TNS) — Hurricane Dorian made landfall early Friday over Cape Hatteras as a Category 1 hurricane, according to the National Hurricane Center.
The center of the eye passed the Outer Banks off the North Carolina coast at 8:35 a.m., with sustained winds of 90 mph, while moving north at 14 mph.
Parts of coastal North Carolina, including Morehead City, had been within the eyewall for hours early Friday, but NOAA officials say the center of the eye must cross onto land before landfall is official.
It happened after nearly a week after Dorian reached central Florida and began a slow push north, moving as slowly as 1 mph at times, said the hurricane center.
Dorian’s lumbering pace caused extensive periods of heavy wind and rain along the East Coast, which continued Friday in North Carolina.
Multiple counties near the North Carolina coast remained under curfews early Friday, with highways flooded, some roads washed out and fallen trees trapping people in their neighborhoods, according to social media posts.
A growing number of people — nearly 220,000 — in North Carolina also woke up to power outages Friday, including 22,000 in New Hanover County, 28,000 in Brunswick County and 36,000 in Carteret County.
The outages increased by 30,000 from 4:30 a.m. to 5:30 a.m.
Shelters were opened at 70 schools near the coast, and nearly 10,000 people had taken the offer overnight, according to state officials. Three of the shelters in New Hanover County were reportedly full.
In coastal New Hanover County, residents were being told not to call 911 “unless there is a life threatening emergency.” They were also warned that “Duke Energy will not be responding to downed power lines until day break due to the extremely hazardous conditions.”
New Hanover, home to Wilmington, saw some of the highest gusts (64 mph) and rainfall totals so far during the storm’s trek through the Carolinas, with 10.25 inches reported at one site, according to the National Hurricane Center.
In South Carolina, a site in Georgetown County had 11.29 inches of rain and a 62 mph gust, officials said.
State officials have attributed one death — an 85-year-old man who fell — to the storm so far. But Pamlico County Sheriff Chris Davis told WITN a man in Oriental had a heart attack and died while “pulling his boat out of the water” during the storm Thursday.
A NOAA weather station within the western portion of Dorian’s eye reported 69 mph sustained winds and gusts of 75 mph, forecasters said. Gusts of 85 mph were reported by a station at Fort Macon near Atlantic Beach, the center said.
The eye of the storm is projected to stay on or near the North Carolina coast much of Friday, churning the ocean and dropping inches of rain on the eastern half of the state.
“Hurricane-force winds extend outward up to 45 miles from the center and tropical-storm-force winds extend outward up to 220 miles,” the National Hurricane Center said.
Tornadoes remain possible in coastal counties like Currituck and Camden in northern North Carolina, forecasters say.
“Life-threatening storm surge and dangerous winds are expected to continue along portions of the North Carolina coast,” the National Hurricane Center said at 5 a.m. “Flash flooding is occurring, and will continue to become more widespread across the eastern Carolinas and far southeast Virginia this morning.”
IRVONA — Irvona Borough Council heard plans for a new event to be held in the borough.
Fall Fest is being planned for Saturday, Oct. 19 from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. at Elderberry Park, 5 Railroad St., Irvona.
Committee Member Amanda Chutko provided council with some of the details about the day of fun in the borough. She said the committee is still working to plan the family-friendly event.
More than 30 vendors have registered to attend, bringing food, jewelry, woodworking, crafts and crocheted items. Other vendors and crafters have expressed interest Chutko said, adding she is waiting for confirmation from them. More vendors and crafters are welcome. Those interested will find a form to register on the Irvona Event Committee’s Facebook page along with the costs for space and electricity.
Chutko said the festival will also include contests, she said, adding costume and pie-eating have been confirmed, and a several others are in the works. The contests will have limited numbers of participants, so those planning to enter should register on the Facebook page to help the committee know exactly how many to plan for.
There will be musical entertainment, pumpkin decorating and a selfie station, she said.
Posters will be put up soon throughout the community announcing the Fall Festival, Chutko said.
PATTON — Prince Gallitzin State Park will host its annual Apple Cider Festival and Craft Show on Sunday, Oct. 6 from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. at Muskrat Beach Area 2.
The festival features more than 100 craft vendors, 20 food vendors, live entertainment from the bands Ride the Song and Tree, hayrides, a petting zoo, chainsaw carving, apple cider demonstrations, environmental education programs and more.
Admission is free with donations accepted for parking. All donations collected by the Friends of Prince Gallitzin State Park will go toward supporting projects and events for the park.
For more information, contact Tony DeSantis, Environmental Education Specialist, at 674-1000 ext. 105 or by email at firstname.lastname@example.org.