Thousands Evacuate North Carolina as Tropical Storm Maria Nears

An estimated 10,000 people have evacuated North Carolina as Tropical Storm Maria passes the coast.

Maria, which has been downgraded from its previous hurricane status, is expected to stay at least 150 miles offshore, CBS reports. However, the region is still expected to be lashed with rains, winds and storm surges.

The storm currently has winds close to 70 mph.

Visitors of Hatteras Island, North Carolina have been ordered to leave. The estimated 500 permanent residents of the island has not been forced to evacuate.

Schools in area have closed in preparation for the worst of the storms, which are expected to hit on Wednesday and Thursday.


The National Weather Service has stated that some regions will face beach erosion and storm surges of 2-4 feet. Dangerous rip currents are said to be possible for the remainder of the week.

See the National Hurricane Center's latest Maria projection below.

(Photo: National Hurricane Center)