NWS: Watches upgraded to Tropical Storm Warnings

Published 5:43 am Wednesday, August 30, 2023

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Hurricane Idalia Local Statement Advisory Number 15
National Weather Service Newport/Morehead City NC AL102023
526 AM EDT Wed Aug 30 2023

This product covers Eastern North Carolina



– The Tropical Storm Watch has been upgraded to a Tropical Storm Warning for Beaufort, Coastal Onslow, East Carteret, Hatteras Island, Inland Onslow, Jones, Mainland Dare, Mainland Hyde, Northern Craven, Northern Outer Banks, Ocracoke Island, Pamlico, Southern Craven, Tyrrell, and West Carteret

– A Tropical Storm Warning and Storm Surge Watch are in effect for Beaufort, East Carteret, Mainland Hyde, Pamlico, and Southern Craven
– A Tropical Storm Warning is in effect for Coastal Onslow, Hatteras Island, Inland Onslow, Jones, Mainland Dare, Northern Craven, Northern Outer Banks, Ocracoke Island, Tyrrell, and West Carteret

– About 660 miles southwest of Buxton NC or about 580 miles southwest of Morehead City NC
– 29.1N 84.1W
– Storm Intensity 130 mph
– Movement North-northeast or 25 degrees at 18 mph


Hurricane Idalia is forecast to make landfall in the Big Bend of Florida early this morning. It will then track along the Carolina coast with
the center passing over Onslow Bay Thursday afternoon. Regardless of the exact track of Idalia, there is the potential for significant impacts to eastern North Carolina.

Heavy rain bands will bring widespread rainfall amounts of 4 to 8 inches, with locally higher amounts, bringing the threat of localized flash flooding especially in low-lying, urban, and poor drainage areas. Heavy rainfall preceding Idalia could exacerbate this risk.

Dangerous storm surge inundation of 2-4 feet above ground is possible along the Neuse and Pamlico Rivers and associated tributaries, as well as Core and southern Pamlico Sounds. Winds approaching tropical storm force could lead to some downed trees and isolated power outages, especially along and east of Highway 17. Tornadoes may result in areas of locally enhanced damage, particularly near the coast.

Dangerous marine conditions are expected for all offshore waters and the Pamlico Sound, with strong winds and dangerous seas building to create treacherous conditions for mariners. Localized ocean overwash will be possible along the coast due to high surf. Stronger and more frequent rip currents will also exist along area beaches.


Protect against life-threatening rainfall flooding having possible extensive impacts across all of eastern North Carolina. Potential
impacts include:
– Major rainfall flooding may prompt many evacuations and rescues.
– Rivers and tributaries may rapidly overflow their banks in multiple places. Small streams, creeks, canals, and ditches may become dangerous rivers. Flood control systems and barriers may become stressed.
– Flood waters can enter many structures within multiple communities, some structures becoming uninhabitable or washed away. Many places where flood waters may cover escape routes. Streets and parking lots become rivers of moving water with underpasses submerged. Driving conditions become dangerous. Many road and bridge closures with some weakened or washed out.

Protect against dangerous rainfall flooding having possible significant impacts across all of eastern North Carolina.

Prepare for life-threatening surge having possible significant impacts across the Neuse and Pamlico River and adjacent tributaries as well as the southern Pamlico and Core Sounds. Potential impacts in this area include:
– Areas of inundation with storm surge flooding accentuated by waves. Damage to several buildings, mainly near the coast.
– Sections of near-shore escape routes and secondary roads become weakened or washed out, especially in usually vulnerable low
– Major beach erosion with heavy surf breaching dunes. Strong and numerous rip currents.
– Moderate damage to marinas, docks, boardwalks, and piers. Several small craft broken away from moorings, especially in unprotected anchorages.

Also, prepare for locally hazardous surge having possible limited impacts across the Albemarle Sound, Outer Banks, and Crystal Coast.

Protect against hazardous wind having possible limited impacts across Eastern North Carolina. Potential impacts include:
– Damage to porches, awnings, carports, sheds, and unanchored mobile homes. Unsecured lightweight objects blown about.
– Many large tree limbs broken off. A few trees snapped or uprooted, but with greater numbers in places where trees are shallow rooted. Some fences and roadway signs blown over.
– A few roads impassable from debris, particularly within urban or heavily wooded places. Hazardous driving conditions on bridges and other elevated roadways.
– Scattered power and communications outages.

Prepare for a dangerous tornado event having possible significant impacts across the southern coast of eastern North Carolina.
Potential impacts include:
– The occurrence of scattered tornadoes can hinder the execution of emergency plans during tropical events.
– Several places may experience tornado damage with a few spots of considerable damage, power loss, and communications failures.
– Locations could realize roofs torn off frame houses, mobile homes demolished, boxcars overturned, large trees snapped or uprooted, vehicles tumbled, and small boats tossed about. Dangerous projectiles can add to the toll.

Elsewhere across Eastern North Carolina, little to no impact is anticipated.


Now is the time to complete all preparations to protect life and property in accordance with your emergency plan. Ensure you are in a safe location before the onset of strong winds or possible flooding.

Failure to adequately shelter may result in serious injury or loss of life. Always heed the advice of local officials and comply with any orders that are issued. Remember, during the storm 9 1 1 Emergency Services may not be able to immediately respond if conditions are unsafe. This should be a big factor in your decision making.

Keep cell phones well charged. Cell phone chargers for automobiles can be helpful, but be aware of your risk for deadly carbon monoxide poisoning if your car is left idling in a garage or other poorly ventilated area.

It is important to remain calm, informed, and focused during an emergency. Be patient and helpful with those you encounter.

If you are a visitor, be sure to know the name of the city or town in which you are staying and the name of the county in which it resides. Listen for these locations in local news updates. Pay attention for instructions from local authorities.

Storm surge is the leading killer associated with tropical storms and hurricanes! Make sure you are in a safe area away from the surge zone. Even if you are not in a surge-prone area, you could find yourself cutoff by flood waters during and after the storm. Heed evacuation orders issued by the local authorities.

Rapidly rising flood waters are deadly. If you are in a flood-prone area, consider moving to higher ground. Never drive through a flooded roadway. Remember, turn around don’t drown!

If a Tornado Warning is issued for your area, be ready to shelter quickly, preferably away from windows and in an interior room not prone to flooding. If driving, scan the roadside for quick shelter options.

If in a place that is vulnerable to high wind, such as near large trees, a manufactured home, upper floors of a high-rise building, or on a boat, consider moving to a safer shelter before the onset of strong winds or flooding.

Closely monitor weather.gov, NOAA Weather radio or local news outlets for official storm information. Be ready to adapt to possible changes to the forecast. Ensure you have multiple ways to receive weather warnings.

– For information on appropriate preparations see ready.gov
– For information on creating an emergency plan see getagameplan.org
– For additional disaster preparedness information see redcross.org