Category 3 storm Hurricane Ian made landfall in Cuba early Tuesday morning and could impact the Carolinas by Thursday.
The storm is projected to cause life-threatening storm surge to communities along the west coast of Florida beginning Wednesday morning, according to the National Weather Service.
By Thursday or Friday, the storm will cross into the Southeast U.S.
“Some impacts” will likely reach the Carolinas, “especially Friday and Saturday,” according to the National Weather Service Wilmington’s update at 7:30 a.m. Tuesday.
Anticipated impacts include heavy rainfall, flooding, wind gusts and isolated tornadoes. Gusty winds are expected to arrive Thursday, which could prompt minor coastal flooding during high tides.
There is a 5-10% chance that tropical storm conditions will occur in Southeastern North Carolina. Tropical storm winds could arrive Friday night across the region, according to the NWS report.
An estimated 6-8 inches of heavy rainfall is expected in Southeastern North Carolina. “The heaviest rainfall is expected to develop during Friday and persist into Sunday morning,” according to the report.
There is a low chance that area rivers could reach minor flood levels.
The NWS will release its next local briefing at 6 p.m.
Airport operations at Wilmington International Airport will continue, according to an ILM spokesperson.
"We anticipate airlines will make flight decisions in the coming days," the spokesperson said Tuesday morning. "As Hurricane Ian potentially impacts areas where ILM airline partners fly, the airport encourages travelers to connect directly with their airline for the most up-to-date flight status and travel alerts."
Some planned events in the region may be canceled or rescheduled. On Monday, New Hanover County announced
its 27th annual Art in the Arboretum will be rescheduled to Nov. 5 and 6.