Outer Banks vacationers pack up, leave early as Arthur approaches

by: Dave Faherty Updated:

OUTER BANKS, N.C. - Signs warning of Hurricane Arthur's arrival compelled many people visiting North Carolina's Outer Banks to pack up and leave their vacation early Thursday.

Some were even forced to leave after a mandatory evacuation was issued for Hatteras Island.

As the storm intensified overnight, a big change in attitude came for the people vacationing there.

Families scrambled to get their loved ones out of harm’s way. There was a steady stream of traffic heading north along Highway 12.

Mandatory evacuations went into place first thing Thursday morning and thousands of people heeded those warnings.

The North Carolina Highway Patrol set up a roadblock preventing any traffic from heading south on the two-lane highway.

The main concern is that the area could flood.

One father told Channel 9 he packed his car first thing in the morning.

Cape Hatteras and Ocracoke Island ferries suspended service.

The Transportation Department decided to cancel the remaining ferries after 4 p.m. until conditions improve once Arthur passes.

MORE ON ARTHUR: Conditions deteriorating along NC coast as Arthur approaches