Port condition Whiskey set for Wilmington, Morehead City

FORT MACON, N.C. — The Captain of the Port Sector North Carolina has set port condition Whiskey for Wilmington and Morehead City in preparation for the anticipated weather impact of Hurricane Earl.

Maritime hurricane condition Whiskey is a heightened condition of readiness to indicate 72 hours prior to arrival of gale force winds and anticipated landfall associated with Earl.

The Whiskey condition port status is open to all commercial traffic.

Gale force winds of at least 34 knots or 39 mph are expected to reach Frying Pan Shoals Lighted Buoy 16, light list number 835, within 72 hours. Pleasure craft operators are advised to seek safe harbor. To enter, transit or remain within this zone, vessels must comply with the following requirements:

  1. All commercial vessels and barges greater than 500 gross tons and all tank barges greater than 200 gross tons desiring to remain in port must arrange safe mooring. They shall also complete an application and submit it in writing within 24 hours to the Captain of the Port to remain import.
  2. Commercial vessels and barges greater than 500 gross tons and tank barges greater than 200 gross tons departing the port must depart no later than 24 hours prior to the arrival of gale force winds at Frying Pan Shoals Lighted Buoy
  3. Vessels bound for these ports that are unable to depart 24 hours prior to the arrival of gale force winds at Frying Pan Shoals Lighted Buoy 16 are advised to seek an alternative destination.

Mariners are also advised that drawbridges will remain closed when winds 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.

For guidance on specific issues or to obtain vessel applications to remain in port, contact the Sector North Carolina operations center at the number at 252-247-4570.

A vessel application checklist can be obtained online at http://homeport.uscg.mil. Select North Carolina in the Port Directory. The checklist is located under the “Local Contingency Plans” header selecting the “Sector NC Severe Weather Plan” link.

For any other issues please contact Sector North Carolina at 252-247-4570 or Marine Safety Unit Wilmington at 910-512-5830

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