Gov. Roy Cooper just issued around 12:30 p.m. Tuesday a mandatory state evacuation for the barrier islands of North Carolina ahead of Hurricane Florence.
"Even if you've ridden out storms before, this one is different," Cooper said at a news conference.
"The time to hope Florence goes away is gone."
The entire southern East Coast of the United States is bracing for the arrival of Hurricane Florence as the storm approaches.
More than 1 million people face mandatory evacuation orders in coastal areas of Virginia, North Carolina and South Carolina.
Hurricane and storm surge watches were issued for portions of the coasts of the Carolinas Tuesday morning, the National Hurricane Center said.
Hurricane watches extend from Edisto Beach, South Carolina, northward to the North Carolina-Virginia border, including the Pamlico and Albemarle Sounds. Those areas are at risk for hurricane conditions and "life-threatening inundation from rising water moving inland from the coastline" during the next 48 hours, the NHC said.
For the latest on the impacts here in the Piedmont Triad click here.