North Carolina Parks Prep for Hurricane Irene
North Carolina parks in and near the Outer Banks are preparing for the imminent arrival of Hurricane Irene.
The Charlotte Observer reports that National Park Service campgrounds (Ocracoke, Frisco, Cape Point and Oregon Inlet) closed at noon today (Aug. 24). The Ocracoke Campground reservation system temporarily suspended.
The Ocracoke, Hatteras, Bodie Island, Wright Brothers and Fort Raleigh visitor centers will close at 5 p.m. today and remain closed until further notice.
Cape Hatteras Lighthouse is closing at 6 p.m. today until further notice. All special programs Thursday for Founders Day are canceled.
Flags Over Hatteras event scheduled Thursday through Sunday is postponed.
Lifeguard operations on the Outer Banks are suspended at 5 p.m. today. Ocracoke beaches are closed to off-road vehicles after 6 p.m. All other Outer Banks beaches are closed to off-road vehicles at 6 p.m. Thursday.
In New Hanover County, Saturday's Winoca Fest at Battleship Park in Wilmington is canceled.
In South Carolina, the National Guard is on standby, with 2,000 troops ready for road clearance and rescue efforts in case the hurricane makes landfall there.
The American Red Cross is on alert with volunteers and food.
The state is ready to use its lane-reversal plan, to handle evacuation traffic inland from Charleston and in Beaufort and Horry counties.