The Latest: Wind gusts are main concern in Beaufort County

Published 8:00 pm Monday, August 28, 2017

1 p.m. Tuesday

A tropical storm warning is still in effect for eastern North Carolina. A flash flood watch remains in effect until 5 p.m.

The National Weather Service recently issued a small craft advisory for the area. One of the main threats this afternoon is wind gusts, which could lead to fallen trees and power lines in some areas. Although officials originally predicted maximum gusts up to 55 mph, the latest forecast shows gusts under 40 mph.

Potential Tropical Cyclone 10 remains unorganized and unnamed. Tracks predict the storm will move into the northern Atlantic by tomorrow.

10 a.m. Tuesday

The latest closings include: Beaufort County Schools, Beaufort County Community College, Northeast Regional School of Biotechnology and Agriscience, Hyde County Schools-Mattamuskeet campus, Beaufort County Developmental Center, Boys & Girls Clubs of Beaufort County, Beaufort Area Transit System (except dialysis), Pungo Christian Academy, Unity Christian Academy and Washington Montessori Public Charter School.

Potential Tropical Cyclone 10 reached the North Carolina coast around 8 a.m. today. Its maximum sustained winds remain at 40 mph, but it has picked up speed, traveling northeast at 15 mph.

Rain and high winds are expected to continue throughout the afternoon. Beaufort County Emergency Management is warning residents to watch for fallen trees and secure loose objects.


11 p.m. Monday

“Potential Tropical Cyclone 10” has slightly slowed, moving at 7 mph. It remains off the coast of South Carolina, with maximum sustained winds of 40 mph.

The National Weather Service upgraded the flooding risk of inland areas from “elevated” to “moderate.” Scattered road closures are possible. Predicted maximum wind gusts have also increased in some areas up to 60 mph Tuesday afternoon.

According to officials, there is a 60-percent chance of this storm turning into a named tropical storm.

Beaufort County Community College will be closed Tuesday. Beaufort County Schools is expected to make a decision on closings or delays by 6 a.m. Tuesday.

8 p.m. Monday

The latest forecasts show the storm hitting the Wilmington area Tuesday morning, and hovering over this area early Tuesday afternoon.

As of Monday evening, “Potential Tropical Cyclone 10” was traveling northeast and recorded maximum sustained winds of 40 mph, according to the National Weather Service. The storm slightly picked up speed over the course of Monday, traveling at 12 mph Monday evening.

Officials are still unsure if the storm will strengthen into a named tropical storm, or remain an unnamed cyclone.

Beaufort County remains under a tropical storm warning until later Tuesday, as well as a flash flood watch until 8 p.m. Storm surge is not a major threat in this area.

Winds are expected to increase substantially Tuesday, with some areas of the county experiencing up to 55-mph wind gusts. Officials predict rainfall amounts will stay within the 4- to 6-inch range, although individual spots could see more, according to the National Weather Service.

Chris Newkirk, Beaufort County Fire and Emergency Management operations chief, said the biggest threat lies in the order of the storm’s effects, as rain will come well before high winds. Newkirk said this means saturated soils are coupled with the high winds, leading to more fallen trees.

“Many North Carolinians are still recovering from Hurricane Matthew’s devastation last fall,” Gov. Roy Cooper said in a statement. “We’ve watched sympathetically over the past few days as Texans struggle with the impacts of Hurricane Harvey. While this storm is not predicted to be that severe, we want everyone to take it seriously and ensure your family is prepared.”

Beaufort County Emergency Management is asking residents to prepare for possible damage to property and unsafe flooding in low-lying areas.

Residents should secure lightweight objects, watch for fallen tree limbs and move to adequate shelter. Blocked roadways and scattered power outages are a possibility. If a roadway is flooded, drivers are advised to turn around, rather than trying to drive through the water. Most flood deaths occur in vehicles.

In response to the impending tropical weather, Hyde County issued a state of emergency on Monday and closed its government offices today. Hyde County Schools also closed its Mattamuskeet Campus schools today and issued an optional teacher workday starting at 9 a.m. Northeast Regional School of Biotechnology and Agriscience is operating on a one-hour delay.

As of Monday evening, Beaufort County had made no such decisions, but emergency officials were still monitoring the situation as it progressed throughout the night and early morning. Beaufort County Schools Superintendent Dr. Don Phipps said any decision on school closings or delays would be made this morning. For the latest updates, visit, or follow the district on Twitter @BeaufortCountySchoolsNC.

Beaufort County Community College announced it will be closed Tuesday.


4 p.m. Monday

Beaufort County remains under a tropical storm warning until further notice. A flash flood watch has been extended to 8 p.m. Tuesday, as well.

As of 3 p.m. Monday, rain had already begun to fall in some parts of the county. It is expected to continue well into tomorrow, growing in intensity. Rainfall predictions for Monday night remain at 2-3 inches.

Potential Tropical Cyclone 10 remains unnamed at this time. With maximum sustained winds of 40 mph, the storm is moving north at 9 mph.


11 a.m. Monday

Beaufort County and surrounding areas are now under a tropical storm warning. A warning means tropical storm-force winds are expected in this area within the next 36 hours. The strongest of those winds are still forecast for Tuesday.

The county is also under a flash flood watch. Chance of rain is expected to increase as the day progresses.

“Potential Tropical Cyclone 10” is now off the coast of Georgia. With maximum sustained winds of 35 mph, the storm is moving north-northeast at 9 mph. It is forecast to hit eastern North Carolina on Tuesday morning.


7 p.m. Sunday

A watch means tropical storm-force winds are possible, with 30-40 mph winds and gusts up to 55 mph in the forecast, according to the National Weather Service in Newport. These winds are expected to occur Tuesday. Officials are advising residents to secure lightweight objects, watch for fallen tree limbs and move to adequate shelter. Blocked roadways and scattered power outages are a possibility.

Although the National Weather Service predicts little to no threat from storm surge in Beaufort County, localized flooding may occur, especially low-lying areas. Peak rainfall estimates show 2-4 inches, but some areas may see up to 6 inches.

The tropical storm watch stems from a low-pressure system about 310 miles southwest of Morehead City. Unnamed at this time, the system could grow in strength over the next couple of days and become another named storm. “Potential Tropical Cyclone 10” was showing little movement as of Sunday evening. It is expected to travel northward and reach eastern North Carolina by either Monday night or Tuesday.