Updated Hurricane Dorian info: Evacuations, closings, shelters, hotlines, and more [Free read]

A satellite image of Hurricane Dorian over Grand Bahama Island captured on Monday, September 1. (Photo Courtesy NOAA)
A satellite image of Hurricane Dorian over Grand Bahama Island. (Photo Courtesy NOAA)

WILMINGTON — As Hurricane Dorian slowly makes its way up the east coast, local institutions have already begun announcing closures and delays.

North Carolina Governor Roy Cooper has issued a state of emergency, and other counties and municipalities are following suit.

The following list will be updated as more information is made available.


School closings

New Hanover County Schools – NHCS will operate on a regular schedule on Tuesday, September 3, but all evening after-school events are canceled. School will be closed on Wednesday through Friday, September 4 through 6.

Brunswick County Schools – BCS will dismiss on a half-day schedule on Tuesday. District leaders are considering further closures and will announce them soon.

Pender County Schools – PCS will be open Tuesday and closed Wednesday and Thursday. Officials will determine whether to open or remain closed Friday later this week.

Cape Fear Academy  – Will close on Wednesday until further notice.

University of North Carolina Wilmington – UNCW will be open on Tuesday, September until 5 p.m. but classes are canceled all week (Tuesday through Friday, September 3 through 6). All students are required to evacuate the campus, including dorms, by Tuesday at 5 p.m. Housing updates for students can be found here.

Brunswick County Community College – BCCC will close at 11:45 a.m. on Tuesday. Campus will be closed Wednesday, Thursday, and Friday.

Cape Fear Community College – CFCC will be closed through Saturday, September 7, due to Hurricane Dorian. All classes at all campus locations including all online classes will not meet Wednesday, September 4 through Saturday, September 7. All events, games, and practices at all CFCC locations are also canceled. Please monitor local news media and follow CFCC on social media for updates.

Hospital closings

New Hanover Regional Medical Center has announced the following closings:

  • Elective inpatient procedures will be canceled starting Wednesday. This is because many procedures require follow-up that may not be possible later this week.
  • Outpatient surgeries will continue until 3 p.m. on Wednesday. Surgeries scheduled after that time will be rescheduled. Staff will be contacting impacted patients.
  • Outpatient facilities, including Health & Diagnostics locations and NHRMC Physician Group practices, will close at their normal times on Wednesday and will be closed at least through the storm.

All NHRMC Emergency Departments will remain open through the storm, including those at NHRMC’s 17th Street Campus, Orthopedic Hospital, Pender Memorial Hospital, and NHRMC Emergency Department – North.

Read More on NHRMC.org: How to Prepare for a Hurricane When You Have Special Medical Needs

Dosher Medical on Oak Island announced Wednesday morning it will be closed, effective immediately.

Dosher Memorial Hospital and all other clinics, including Dosher Urgent Care on Long Beach Road, will remain open on Wednesday.

Government closings

New Hanover County – NHC will activate its Emergency Operations Center (EOC) at 7 p.m. on Tuesday morning. New Hanover County Government offices and services will be closed Tuesday, September 3 and will remain closed until further notice, including: New Hanover County Libraries, Senior Resource Center, Airlie Gardens, Arboretum, Cape Fear Museum, and New Hanover County Parks.

The County Commissioners meeting scheduled for Tuesday, September 3, including the vote to explore a sale of New Hanover Regional Medical Center, has been moved to Monday, September 16 at 4 p.m. (all items from Tuesday’s agenda will be added to the September 16 agenda).

New Hanover County Courthouse will close at noon on Wednesday; courts expect to reopen on Monday, Sept. 9.

City of Wilmington – City offices and operations will run as usual on Tuesday, they will close on Wednesday and Thursday. No decision yet about Friday. Updates can be found here.

  • Trash/recycling/yard waste pick-up will run on regular schedule on Tuesday. Downtown Commercial Business District early morning pickup will run on regular schedule Wednesday morning. There is no regular trash collection for city customers on Wednesdays.
  • City parks will be closed Wednesday and Thursday. Friday and Saturday concerts at Greenfield Lake Amphitheater have been cancelled.
  • This week’s City Council and Planning Commission meetings are canceled.
  • Free parking: The Market Street and 2nd Street parking decks will open at 5 p.m. on Tuesday for residents to park vehicles only (no boats, wave runners, trailers or other miscellaneous personal property). The gates will be lowered again once the storm has passed.
  • Note: The first level of the decks is reserved for high profile emergency vehicles and handicap parking only. Those with reserved parking spaces are asked to move their vehicles higher up in the deck as emergency vehicles will take priority on the first level. The city assumes no liability for vehicles that may be damaged before, during or after the storm.

Pender County – Pender County Courthouse will close at 2 p.m. on Wednesday; courts expect to reopen on Monday, Sept. 9. All parks will close at noon on Tuesday.

Brunswick County – County offices will close Thursday and Friday.

Wave Transit

  • Wednesday, September 4 – All paratransit and fixed-route bus service will be suspended at 6 p.m. Transportation services through the IC3 for evacuations to New Hanover County shelter locations will conclude at 8:00 pm.
  • Friday, September 6 – WAVE expects to resume operation, weather permitting.

Bridge closures

Most bridges will close when windspeeds approach around 45 mph, but some will close sooner. Get details here.

Shelters and Evacuations

New Hanover County – All of the beach communities in New Hanover County, including Carolina Beach, Kure Beach, Wrightsville Beach, and Figure Eight Island (part of unincorporated New Hanover County) would issue mandatory evacuations starting at 8 a.m. on Wednesday, September 4.

Coudriet said Wilmington and New Hanover County would also issue voluntary evacuations for low-lying and flood-prone areas of the city and unincorporated county. (New Hanover County maintains a storm surge map, updated every six hours, online)

The county is also opening two emergency shelters at 10 a.m. on Wednesday, September 4, to assist residents in need of shelter during weather impacts of Hurricane Dorian. Each shelter has room for approximately 100 people, according to Still. WAVE transit will be making stops at the shelters (details on which routes will reach the shelters coming soon). 

More info on the county’s storm response can be found here.

Blair Elementary on Blair School Road, also known as Wrightsville Beach at Blair Elementary (Pet-friendly Shelter)
6510 Market St.
Wilmington, NC 28405 

Codington Elementary School
4321 Carolina Beach Rd.
Wilmington, NC 28412 

Shelter info:

  • Those seeking emergency shelter should bring their own blankets/pillows, prescription medications and other necessary items like extra clothing and hygiene supplies. No alcohol, illegal drugs, or weapons are permitted. There will be limited food service available for people seeking shelter.   
  • Animals will be maintained in a separate wing of the facility, and owners are allowed visitation at designated times. Residents who are leaving town or staying in a location that does not welcome pets have the option of taking their pet to the New Hanover County Animal Services Unit at 180 Division Drive. Owners are responsible for providing a crate for their pet and any medication and food for special dietary needs. 

Bald Head Island – Voluntary Evacuation Ordered: Mayor Andrew Sayre proclaimed a State of Emergency for the Village of Bald Head Island effective 9 a.m. Monday. This proclamation includes a voluntary evacuation of the Village of Bald Head Island and orders all “Non-Resident Visitors” to evacuate the Village effective immediately.

Oak Island – The town has issued a State of Emergency, effective Tuesday, September 3 at noon. This includes a mandatory evacuation for all visitors and tourists, and a voluntary evacuation for residents in low-lying areas.

Surf City – Surf City Mayor Doug Medlin declared a State of Emergency effective 1 p.m. Sunday, September 1, although there is no evacuation ordered at this time. All residents of Surf City are urged to sign up for the Surf City CodeRED Emergency Alert System, available on the town website’s “Email and Phone Alerts” menu button on the left menu bar.

Because the bridge to Topsail Island may close, the town is encouraging residents to have at least seven days of food, water, medications, cash, fuel, and other necessities on hand, and to secure items on their properties.

Pender County – Pender County Office will open three shelters on Wednesday, September 4, at 2 p.m.

Cape Fear Middle School (Pet-friendly shelter)
1886 NC-133
Rocky Point

Malpass Corners Elementary School
4992 Malpass Corner Road
Burgaw

Topsail Elementary School
17385 US-17
Hampstead

All shelters will open Wednesday, September 4, at 2 p.m.

Brunswick County – The county will issue a voluntary evacuation notice Wednesday at 8 a.m.

Three shelters will open (all are pet-friendly) Wednesday, September 4 at 8 a.m. Additional shelter information can be found here.

North Brunswick High School
114 Scorpion Drive
Leland

West Brunswick High School
550 Whiteville Road
Shallotte

South Brunswick High School
280 Cougar Road
Boiling Spring Lakes

Meals will be available around 4 p.m. on Wednesday.

What you should bring with you to the shelter:

  • Blankets are available at the shelters, but you are welcome to bring your own blanket and pillow
  • Medications you take every day
  • If you use oxygen, bring extra oxygen tanks (enough for 3 or more days depending on the size and possible impact of the storm/event)
  • Several days of clothing
  • Personal hygiene items: Toothbrush, toothpaste, soap, comb/brush, etc.
  • Any special dietary items
  • Pet food and supplies (bowls, cages, leashes, etc.)
  • Baby supplies: Diapers, formula, etc. (enough for 3 or more days depending on the size and possible impact of the storm/event)
  • Cards, games, books to pass the time
  • If you need a caregiver, a caregiver must accompany you to the shelter. Shelter staff will try to assist but are not able to provide ongoing one on one care.
  • Eat before you arrive. Meals may not be available during the first 24 hours. Bring snacks.

Items not allowed in the shelter:

  • Alcohol and/or drugs
  • Weapons
  • Mattress or Air Mattress (space is limited)
  • Chairs or other furniture

Hotlines and info

New Hanover County – Beginning Tuesday at 9 a.m., the public information hotline will be established to take calls from residents and visitors of New Hanover County. The hotline will be available 24 hours a day and can be reached at (910) 798-6800, with Spanish speakers available. Please use 911 only for true emergencies, and this hotline for all questions.

Preparation tips and sign-ups for email or text message updates can be found online here.

Brunswick County – The latest update on Brunswick County Emergency Services‘ preparations for Hurricane Dorian is now online here.

Pender County – Updates will be posted on the EOC’s Facebook page and on the county’s website. Those who need assistance are urged to call the EM office at (910) 259-1210. Pender County residents can also sign up for CodeRED available on the county website’s Emergency Notification System page.

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