WILMINGTON, N.C. — As a light rain ‘calm before the storm’ effect began Wednesday in Wilmington, North Carolina, residents were ready for the worst that Hurricane Dorian might bring.
Blane Daniel, a Buckhannon native who now lives in Wilmington spoke with MetroNews, as the Carolina coasts are expecting the brunt of the storm to pass through on Thursday.
“It looks like it’s going to follow the coastline,” Daniel said of Dorian. “However, there were some forecasts that it may come ashore between Charleston, South Carolina, and the Outer Banks, which means it could easily touch the shore and make landfall on us here in Wilmington.
“When a hurricane comes and makes landfall, even if it’s north or south of us, you still see significant impact.”
The hurricane was at a Category 5 when it went through the Bahamas in the Atlantic Ocean. After landfall there and path towards Florida, Dorian weakened and took a turn East and up the coast of the United States.
As of Wednesday evening, Dorian was a Category 2 hurricane bringing winds of around 100 mph. Daniel said forecasters in Wilmington are calling for winds around 80 mph and up to 10 inches of rain. The 14-year Wilmington native said that would mean worse winds from Hurricane Florence that hit one year ago in September but less rain.
Daniel said potential hurricanes come with living in the area. He said on Wednesday that businesses are ready for their ‘usual plan.’
“Stay open and stay in business as long as possible. Batten things down and hunker down while you wait for it to pass and then get open as soon as possible,” he told MetroNews.
Daniel works as a registered nurse at a local long term/acute care rehab center. He said the facilities first instinct is to shelter-in-place.
His work has windows boarded up, generators ready and a plan to operate without computers, but if the hurricane makes landfall and conditions get worse, he said there is an evacuation plan.
“We have a large U-Haul truck or two on-site that would be available to transport our medication carts and things of that nature,” Daniel said. “We have commercial buses on reserve to transport patients if needed.”
Daniel said the buses would head west towards Raleigh and Charlotte, which his company has sister facilities.