U.S. vacationers stay put as Hurricane Arthur moves in
Thursday, July 3, 2014, 3:48 PM - U.S. forecasters are keeping a close eye on Hurricane Arthur as it moves towards the U.S. with winds up to 120 kilometres per hour.
The storm is on track to hit North Carolina's Outer Banks during the fourth of July weekend, one of the busiest times in the U.S. for summer travelling.
According to AAA, an estimated 41 million people will be on the road this weekend, and that has officials worried.
Mandatory evacuations are already in place along North Carolina's Hatteras Island. People are being ordered to evacuate the popular vacation spot during daylight hours.
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"The more people that evacuate, it makes it easier to go in there and and clean up afterwards, we're not having to do a lot of search and rescue operations and hopefully with this storm we don't have loss of life," Gov. Pat McCrory of North Carolina told reporters.
"Usually where we have casualties is either right before a storm or right after a storm, when people get too comfortable and not listening to the warnings of public safety officials."
According to the U.S National Hurricane Center, the combination of a dangerous storm surge and the tide will cause normally dry areas near the coast to be flooded by rising waters.
But in other parts of the state, some vacationers appear to be undeterred by the storm.
"We're just going to ride it out and see what happens," one beach-goer told local media.
"We've been coming down here for 20 years and we're just going to wait and see what happens."
Local media reports suggest that North Carolina beaches not under an evacuation order are "dotted" with tourists, with many saying they'll stay put as long as they can.
But Gov. McCrory isn't backing down on his messaging. In a Tuesday press conference he urged citizens to heed public warnings and stay safe as the storm passes through.