(CAPE HATTERAS, N.C.) — Arthur is officially a hurricane, the first named storm of the 2014 Atlantic hurricane season, with some coastal residents forced to evacuate and the first rain bands reaching South Carolina.
The storm system — experiencing sustained winds of 75 miles per hour — was centered about 340 miles southwest of Cape Hatteras, N.C. at 5 a.m., and is moving north at about 9 miles per hour, according to the National Weather Service’s National Hurricane Center.
A hurricane warning is stretching through most of North Carolina into the Virginia Beach area, with a tropical storm warning in effect for South Carolina, southern North Carolina, and the mouth of the Chesapeake Bay.
Mandatory evacuations will be underway this morning for Hatteras Island, N.C., with a state of emergency for the state’s coastal areas.
Arthur is expected to bring pounding rains and heavy winds, with 3 to 5 foot storm surges expected and up to four inches of rain in affected areas. Heavy rain should also fall along the I-95 corridor as the storm’s tropical moisture interacts with a cold front.
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Ray Sanchez, CNN
Kathryn Vasel, CNN
Sandra Gonzalez, CNN