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National Guard, Coast Guard Monitor the Storm

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NC National Guard Prep for Hanna
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By Catherine M. Welch

Wilmington, NC – The North Carolina National Guard says it has some 150 soldiers standing by in preparation for the storm.

Units are ready to provide security, ground evacuation and transportation. They are equipped with swift water rescue boats and there are two UH-60 Blackhawk Helicopters on standby if needed.

In Wrightsville Beach, surfers and swimmers braved the rip currents Friday afternoon, and residents gathered under Johnny Mercer's Pier to watch the surf.

Forecasters say the seas will build to 15 to 20 feet with a 4 to 6 feet storm surge. Flooding is expected along the coast.

Coast Guard
The coast guard is urging boaters to stay off the water. Coast Guard Commander John Nedeau says boaters should stay off the water after the storm to be sure its clear of flotsam and jetsam.

"Sometimes in a large storm you may find propane tanks and other debris such as that, that can pose a hazard to people. Of course there are also underwater hazards that may not be visable from the surface, the shifting sand due to the large rip tide, currents and wave action can cause things underwater to move."

Ferry Service
The North Carolina Department of Transportation says it has suspended ferry service on the Southport-Fort Fisher route due to high winds and seas. Ferry service will not resume until sometime Saturday afternoon.

Do you have insight or expertise on this topic? Please email us, we'd like to hear from you. news@whqr.org.