Hurricane Irma

BPR News

MANNA  Foodbank is partnering with several organizations in Buncombe County for a hurricane relief drive.  BPR’s Helen Chickering has details.

Davin Eldridge

After cutting its way through the South, Hurricane Irma left a large swath of devastation in its wake in Western North Carolina. On Wednesday Governor Roy Cooper toured a part of the region hit particularly hard by the storm. BPR's Davin Eldridge was there.

NPR/AP/NOAA

Recent hurricanes Irma and Harvey were a stark reminder of the catastrophic impacts of climate change.   But the words “climate change” have become so politically polarizing that some even avoid saying them.  In Asheville, that’s not the case. 

Matt Bush BPR

Duke Energy reports around 8-thousand customers in Western North Carolina were without power at 10 Thursday morning after the remnants of Hurricane Irma passed through the region early Tuesday.  Most customers who do not have power may not get it restored until Friday evening.  A spokesperson for Duke says many of the remaining outages are spread out over a wide area and are very small, which is slowing the utility's progress.

We’ve become accustomed to hearing the one to five rating for hurricanes, but do you know what those categories mean?  BPR’s Helen Chickering set out to find the answer and talked to a local hurricane researcher who thinks the rating scale is misleading.

NOAA

Hurricane Irma is tracking more to the west of Western North Carolina after making landfall in Florida this weekend.  But WNC will still see significant rainfall on Monday and Tuesday, and authorities are urging residents not to get complacent with the track of the storm.

Updated 12:07 p.m., September 11, 2017

Weakening Tropical Storm Irma will bump into a high pressure system in North Carolina later Monday, bringing some stormy weather to the Triangle. But National Weather Service Meteorologist Gail Hartfield says heavy flooding is not likely.

Electric utilities are preparing for the possibility of widespread power outages if Hurricane Irma blows into the Carolinas next week.  Forecasters say the mostly likely problem will be wind.

UPDATED at 6:10 p.m. Thursday

Governors Roy Cooper of North Carolina and Henry McMaster of South Carolina have both declared a state of emergency so state and local officials can better prepare for Hurricane Irma.

South Carolina Governor Henry McMaster is ordering the evacuations of 143 health care facilities on the coast. He said he’ll decide Saturday morning whether to order an evacuation for residents. But he warns the major highways are already getting crowded with people leaving Florida and Georgia.