Coast Guard sets Port Condition Yankee for Morehead City, NC

Morehead City, NC – The Captain of the Port (COTP) North Carolina has set Port Condition Yankee for the Port of Morehead City in preparation of the anticipated weather impact of Hurricane Maria. The Port of Morehead City is closed to all inbound traffic. No vessel may enter the Port of Morehead City without the permission of the COTP. As a reminder, all cargo and bunker handling operations shall cease upon the setting of Port Condition Zulu 12 hours prior to the arrival of gale force winds (34 knots or 39 mph) and above.

1. All self-propelled oceangoing vessels over 500 gross tons, all oceangoing barges and their supporting tugs, and all tank barges over 200 gross tons departing the Port of Morehead City must schedule their departure to clear the Beaufort Inlet Channel Lighted Whistle Buoy “BM” (LLNR 29328) upon the setting of Port Condition Zulu.

2. All commercial vessels and barges who have received permission from the COTP to remain in the Port of Morehead City must be at their site in accordance with their application as approved by the COTP upon the setting of Port Condition Zulu. Movement within the port is allowed, including towing vessels and assist vessels.

3. Vessels bound for the Port of Morehead City shall seek an alternative destination.

Mariners are also advised that drawbridges will remain closed when wind speeds are 34 knots or greater or once evacuations begin. Because of the uncertainty of weather movements and related bridge closures, mariners are urged to seek passage through drawbridges well in advance of the arrival of gale force winds.

The Coast Guard is warning the public of these important safety messages:

  • Secure belongings: Owners of large boats are urged to move their vessels to inland marinas where they will be less vulnerable to breaking free of their moorings or to sustaining damage. Trailer-able boats should be pulled from the water and stored in a place that is not prone to flooding. Those who are leaving their boats in the water are reminded to remove EPIRBs and to secure life rings, lifejackets and small boats. These items, if not properly secured, can break free and require valuable search and rescue resources be diverted to ensure people are not in distress.
  • Stay clear of beaches: Wave heights and currents typically increase before a storm makes landfall. Even the best swimmers can fall victim to the strong waves and rip currents caused by hurricanes. Swimmers should stay clear of beaches until local lifeguards and law enforcement officials say the water is safe.
  • Be prepared: Area residents should be prepared by developing a family plan, creating a disaster supply kit, having a place to go, securing their home and having a plan for pets. Information can be found at the National Hurricane Center’s webpage.
  • Stay informed: The public should monitor the progress and strength of the storm through local television, radio and Internet. Boaters can monitor its progress on VHF radio channel 16. Information can also be obtained on small craft advisories and warnings on VHF radio channel 16.

Information on how to prepare your boat or trailer for a hurricane can be found at the Coast Guard Storm Center webpage.

For information on the progress of Hurricane Maria and hurricane preparedness, please visit the National Hurricane Center‘s webpage.

For imagery and video of the Hurricane Maria response, please visit our Flicker page.

This graphic shows an approximate representation of coastal areas under a hurricane warning (red), hurricane watch (pink), tropical storm warning (blue) and tropical storm watch (yellow). The orange circle indicates the current position of the center of the tropical cyclone. The black line, when selected, and dots show the National Hurricane Center (NHC) forecast track of the center at the times indicated. The dot indicating the forecast center location will be black if the cyclone is forecast to be tropical The letter inside the dot indicates the NHC's forecast intensity for that time.

This graphic shows an approximate representation of coastal areas under a hurricane warning (red), hurricane watch (pink), tropical storm warning (blue) and tropical storm watch (yellow). The orange circle indicates the current position of the center of the tropical cyclone. The black line, when selected, and dots show the National Hurricane Center (NHC) forecast track of the center at the times indicated. The dot indicating the forecast center location will be black if the cyclone is forecast to be tropical The letter inside the dot indicates the NHC’s forecast intensity for that time.

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