(Originally Posted August 2, 2020 at 5:00 pm)
Modified operating hours and closures for the county, Emergency Public Information Hotline and upcoming State of Emergency
NEW HANOVER COUNTY, NC – New Hanover County is currently under a Hurricane Watch, Tropical Storm Warning and a Flash Flood Watch from Tropical Storm Isaias. The county’s Emergency Management officials are closely monitoring the storm as it makes its way up the east coast, and impacts are expected to begin Monday evening into Tuesday morning for our area.
“Based on the most recent forecast, we are hopeful that our community will not be severely impacted by Tropical Storm Isaias,” said Emergency Management Director Steven Still. “But there are certainly risks that this storm brings – like flash flooding in areas with poor drainage or that are low-lying, as well as possible tornadoes. We will experience tropical storm force winds as well, with peak sustained winds around 55 mph and gusts up to 70 mph. So everyone is encouraged to make their preparations now – and be in a safe location by 8 p.m. on Monday. Because of the low-risk forecast from a storm-surge and high winds perspective, evacuation orders are not expected for New Hanover County, and we do not anticipate needing to open local shelters at this time. It’s important to know for this storm, and any others we may have this season, that COVID-19 has limited all shelter capacity, so staying with friends, family or in a hotel, should be prioritized over community sheltering. If someone has questions, they can call 910-798-6800 for help starting on Monday morning.”
EMERGENCY PUBLIC INFORMATION HOTLINE
New Hanover County will have a modified activation of its Emergency Operations Center (EOC), with a reduced number of employees, beginning on Monday, August 3, with an emergency public information hotline open to take calls from residents and visitors of New Hanover County. The hotline will be available beginning at 8 a.m. on Monday for 24 hours a day until further notice.
Residents can call (910) 798-6800 with questions or for support (Spanish speakers are available). Please use 911 only for true emergencies, and this hotline for all questions.
Given the current forecast and timing of the storm, New Hanover County Government offices, parks, and facilities will close early, at noon, on Monday, August 3, for employees to prepare and be in a safe place by the evening. The county’s landfill will also have modified hours from 6:30 a.m. to noon on Monday.
In addition, county offices and the landfill will be closed on Tuesday, August 2 because of possible impacts from fringe winds that are expected to leave our area by early Tuesday afternoon.
STATE OF EMERGENCY
New Hanover County plans to issue a State of Emergency at noon on Monday, August 3, which provides the county with additional powers and expedites the mobilization of emergency management resources if they are needed for our community.
The county’s Joint Information Center (JIC) will also be activated beginning on Monday to coordinate the release of information about the storm and response activities, in coordination with local and regional emergency management partner organizations. Media can call the JIC at 910-798-6855 or email firstname.lastname@example.org. Regular media briefings are not scheduled at this time.
New Hanover County residents and visitors should complete their hurricane preparedness plans, sign up for emergency news and alerts at EmergencyNHC.com, and stay informed through the county’s trusted social media pages: Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, and Nextdoor.