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New Hanover and Brunswick Counties Declaring States of Emergency at 6 PM Friday

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National Hurricane Center / NOAA
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Hurricane Joaquin is expected to move north and east -- as early European tracks had shown several days ago.

Now that Hurricane Joaquin's projected path turns farther east, as the European meteorological models had predicted, state and local emergency management officials say they’re more confident the storm will stay well offshore.  But there are still statewide warnings about flooding and its ancillary effects.

Downed trees and power outages are likely as the rain continues this weekend because the ground is already thoroughly soaked with earlier rains.  At a news conference today, North Carolina Governor Pat McCrory said he is still very concerned about life-threatening flooding around the state.

"Our state is now likely to miss any direct impact from the hurricane.  But there is still significant danger of flooding, high seas, heavy surf, beach erosion, and overwash.   Many counties across the state are experiencing flood warnings – which means there’s a direct threat to life and property."

The central and western portions of North Carolina will probably see the highest rainfall amounts, says McCrory.  But flooding is still a serious coastal concern. 

Both New Hanover and Brunswick Counties are declaring their own states of emergency at 6 PM tonight – after Governor McCrory instituted a statewide declaration yesterday.  The local issuances are simply about heightened awareness, say New Hanover County officials. 

At this point, there are no plans to open county shelters.