Updated 8:27 p.m.

During a 7 p.m. Emergency Operation Center briefing, Onslow County Manager David Cotton said  fuel in the county is running low ahead of Hurricane Dorian.

Cotton urged residents to conserve fuel if possible.

“Please do not travel if you don’t have to,” Cotton said.

Various agencies also gave updates during the briefing:

Sharon Russell, deputy county manager, said Albert J Ellis Airport is only open for rescue and relief flights. The air traffic control tower will re-open tomorrow around 8 a.m.

“Commercial flights, we are hoping, will resume Friday afternoon,” Russell said.

Kari Sanders, director of the department of social services, said all four county shelters are open and accepting residents, but she warned residents should move quickly if they want to be checked in before the storm hits.

“None of our shelters are at capacity,” Sanders said.

The Swansboro High School shelter, however, is currently running on a generator and thus has limited power.

Rachel Conklin, director of the Onslow County Animal Shelter, said the shelter currently has 28 dogs and eight cats.

According to Lisa Whitman-Grice, the citizens phone bank has fielded 430 calls. She encouraged residents to call if they had any questions. The phone bank is open 24/7. That number is 910-989-5027.

While things remain relatively calm, Director of Emergency Services Norman Bryson warned residents and first responders alike not to grow complacent.

“We have still not seen the worst of its effects,” Bryson said of the hurricane. “Do not take this lightly.”

 

Updated 5:49 p.m.

A total of 197 residents have checked in to the Onslow County shelters as of about 3:30 p.m.

According to Lisa Line, Onslow County public information officer, there were 20 people checked in at Dixon Middle School, 22 at Richlands High School, 44 at Swansboro High School and 111 at the special needs and pet-friendly Jacksonville Commons Middle School.

 

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Original story

A curfew has been issued for the unincorporated areas of Onslow County.

A proclamation stating a curfew would be in effect from 7 p.m. Thursday to 9 a.m. Friday was released Thursday afternoon. The curfew is to “preserve the public health, safety, and welfare of Onslow County citizens and to protect their property as a result of evacuations,” according to the proclamation.

The Onslow County Emergency Operations Center has seen an unusually high volume of 911 calls leading up to when the brunt of Hurricane Dorian is expected to be felt in North Carolina.

Between 6:30 a.m. and 2:30 p.m. on Thursday, the EOC received 88 emergency 911 calls and 214 administrative calls, according to Onslow County Public Information Officer Lisa Line.

For comparison, Line said, on Aug. 28 between 6:30 a.m. and 2:30 p.m. the EOC received 56 emergency 911 calls and 181 administrative calls.

“It’s definitely spiked today,” Line said. “A lot of calls came in today about tornado sightings.”