A hurricane watch means hurricane wind conditions are possible somewhere within this area and within the next 48 hours. A tropical storm warning means tropical storm wind conditions are expected somewhere within this area within the next 36 hours.

Updated at 1:43 p.m.

From North Topsail Beach:

NORTH TOPSAIL BEACH – North Topsail Beach has declared a State of Emergency effective at 2:30 p.m. Friday, October 7 in advance of impacts from Hurricane Matthew. There are no specific restrictions tied to the declaration at this time and a voluntary evacuation for the general public will be in effect starting at 3:00 p.m. today.

Our area is expected to experience tropical force winds for approximately a 24 hour period beginning around 9:00 a.m. on Saturday. The major concern at this time is the potential for heavy rainfall and high storm surge impacts. Our area could see between 6-12" of rain with some areas like North Topsail Beach seeing around 15" of rain. Flooding and flooded roadways will be a concern. Due to the saturation of the ground and the potential for tropical force winds downed trees and downed power lines are another concern. Coastal areas like North Topsail Beach could see storm surge combine with already high coastal water levels to produce higher than normal surge. 

Property owners have been asked to tie down loose items on their property ahead of this storm. Since flooding is likely the Town is asking that the public take caution when driving and not to risk their personal safety by driving through flood water. Power outages may occur. Onslow Water and Sewer Authority (ONWASA) may potentially turn off water service if conditions warrant that to protect its system and customers. Conditions may limit our police, fire, and EMS personnel to travel freely to respond to calls for service.

The Town Park at 465 New River Inlet Road closed at noon today and will re-open Monday morning.

Onslow County will be opening its shelter at Dixon High School on Saturday at 7:00 a.m. (it will be a regular, special needs, and pet shelter). Onslow County will also be opening its Citizens Phone Bank at 9:00 a.m. on Saturday to answer questions about the storm. The phone number is (910) 989-5027.

Town officials will continue to monitor this storm. Information and updates on North Topsail Beach are being posted on the Town’s Facebook page at www.facebook.com/ntbnc.


Updated at 1:27 p.m.

Onslow County Board of Commissioners has declared a state of emergency ahead of Hurricane Matthew. The board has not announced a curfew. To watch the entire meeting, click here.


The National Weather Service has issued a tropical storm warning and hurricane watch for much of
Eastern North Carolina, including Onslow, Carteret, Duplin and Jones counties.

A hurricane watch means hurricane wind conditions are possible somewhere within this area and within the next 48 hours. A tropical storm warning means tropical storm wind conditions are expected somewhere within this area within the next 36 hours.

The watches and warning statement from the NWS is below:
* Wind
- Latest local forecast: equivalent tropical storm force wind
- Peak wind forecast: 40-50 mph with gusts to 75 mph
- Window for tropical storm force winds: Saturday morning until sunday afternoon

- Current threat to life and property: moderate
- Emergency plans should include a reasonable threat for strong tropical storm force wind of 58 to 73 mph.
- To be safe, earnestly prepare for the potential of significant wind impacts. Remaining efforts to secure properties should now be brought to completion.
- Dangerous wind is possible. Failure to adequately shelter may result in injury. Move to safe shelter before the wind becomes hazardous.

- Potential impacts: significant
- Some damage to roofing and siding materials, along with damage to porches, awnings, carports, and sheds. A few buildings experiencing window, door, and garage door failures. Mobile homes damaged, especially if unanchored.
Unsecured lightweight objects become dangerous projectiles.
- Several large trees snapped or uprooted, but with greater numbers in places where trees are shallow rooted. Several fences and roadway signs blown over.
- Some roads impassable from large debris, and more within urban or heavily wooded places. A few bridges, causeways, and access routes impassable.
- Scattered power and communications outages, but more prevalent in areas with above ground lines.

* Storm surge
- Latest local forecast: life-threatening storm surge possible
- Peak storm surge inundation: the potential for 2-4 feet above ground somewhere within surge prone areas
- Window of concern: begins Saturday morning

- Current threat to life and property: moderate
- Emergency plans should include a reasonable threat for dangerous storm surge flooding of greater than 3 feet above ground.
- To be safe, earnestly prepare for the potential of significant storm surge flooding impacts. Evacuation efforts should now be brought to completion. Evacuations nust be complete before driving conditions become unsafe.
- Life-threatening inundation is possible. Failure to heed evacuation orders may result in serious injury or loss of
life. Leave if evacuation orders are given for your area. Consider voluntary evacuation if recommended. Poor decisions may needlessly risk lives.

- Potential impacts: significant
- 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 spots.
- 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.

* Flooding rain
- Latest local forecast: flash flood watch is in effect
- Peak rainfall amounts: additional 10-14 inches, with locally higher amounts

- Current threat to life and property: extreme
- Emergency plans should include a reasonable threat of extreme flooding where peak rainfall totals vastly exceed amounts conducive for flash flooding and rapid inundation.
Rescues and emergency evacuations are very likely.
- To be safe, aggressively prepare for the potential of devastating to catastrophic flooding rain impacts.
- Life-threatening flooding is possible. Failure to take action may result in serious injury, significant loss of life, or human suffering. If flood related watches and warnings are issued, heed recommended actions. Poor decisions may result in being cut off or needlessly risk lives. If vulnerable, relocate to safe shelter on higher ground before flood waters arrive.

- Potential impacts: devastating to catastrophic
- Extreme rainfall flooding may prompt numerous evacuations and rescues.
- Rivers and tributaries may overwhelmingly overflow their banks in many places with deep moving water. Small streams, creeks, canals, and ditches may become raging rivers. In nountain areas, deadly runoff may rage down valleys while increasing susceptibility to rockslides and mudslides. Flood control systems and barriers may become stressed.
- Flood waters can enter numerous structures within multiple communities, some structures becoming uninhabitable or washed away. Numerous places where flood waters may cover escape routes. Streets and parking lots become rivers of raging water with underpasses submerged. Driving conditions become very dangerous. Numerous road and bridge closures with some weakened or washed out.

* Tornado
- Little to no potential impacts from tornadoes.


From City of Jacksonville:

Citing the most recent series of forecasts, guidance from Emergency Management officials and a deep local knowledge of storm effects, Mayor Sammy Phillips has declared a State of Emergency for the City of Jacksonville effective 11AM, Friday, October 7, 2016. 

A series of forecasts have indicated the storm might have more serious rain and wind impact for Jacksonville. Weather and Emergency Management Officials have warned against travel after this evening until the expected passing Sunday. "Turn Around, Don't Drown" should be heeded when high water is found on streets and roads. 

The flooding impact could be serious with a suggestion that residents of areas prone to flooding consider taking action now. Residents of those areas should consider alternative places to shelter against the storm at this time, rather than when the water rises. 

Water may rise quickly and residents should be ready for significant winds that are likely to follow. Onslow County maintains a list of shelters on their website and has announced they will be opening a shelter at Dixon High School Saturday morning. 

The Mayor, Public Safety Director and emergency management officials urge all to be prepared with their own emergency supplies as power could be interrupted, trees could come down from wet grounds and high winds and streets could be blocked or flooded. 

City residents should ensure they have signed up for Jacksonville Connect, our official messaging system that will provide official messages directly from the City. Visit www.jacksonvillenc.gov/connect to sign up or refresh your information.

As a highly precautionary measure should a curfew be necessary, persons who work at the hospital or other essential operations should visit the Center for Public Safety for a re-entry pass.

City crews will be working throughout the storm event, but will be limited in their potential actions when the winds exceed 45 miles an hour. 

As a result of the expected high water, residents should be cautious that snakes and other wild animals as well as insects may seek higher ground.


Some City of Jacksonville actions taken

* City Streets crews have worked to ensure storm drains are clear and ready for a deluge.

* Utilities crews have worked to prepare the City's treatment lagoons for a surcharge of rain and to protect manholes that could be inundated.

* Sandbags have been delivered to New Bridge Street businesses who could be affected by wave action from flooded streets.

* City Streets crews and Police are prepared to block flooded streets and areas such as along the New River.

* Some Recreation programs have been altered as a result of weather related actions taken by others.