DARE COUNTY - Dare County officials have ordered a mandatory evacuation for residents and visitors on Hatteras Island as Tropical Storm Arthur draws closer to the North Carolina coast.
The order takes effect at 5 a.m. Thursday. After that, access to Hatteras Island is prohibited.
According to the order issued Wednesday, all Hatteras Island residents and visitors are advised to evacuate as expediently as possible during the day Thursday.
A state of emergency has been issued for Dare County, with the only restriction being the Hatteras Island evacuation.
People evacuating to the north are advised by county officials to travel westbound on U.S. 64 to Interstate 95. Evacuating to the west of Dare County will help avoid traffic backups and congestion expected from traveling northbound through the Hampton Roads portion of Virginia.