Tropical Storm Arthur: U.S., Canada Advised to Brace for Hurricane Status

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By Esther Tanquintic-Misa | July 3, 2014 2:02 PM EST

Residents in the U.S.' North Carolina coast as well as Canada's Nova Scotia area have been advised to take necessary precautions as tropical storm Arthur continued to gain strength, potentially hitting hurricane level by Thursday.

REUTERS/NASA/Handout via Reute
Tropical Storm Arthur is pictured off the east coast of Florida in this July 1, 2014 NASA handout satellite photo. July 1, 2014. REUTERS/NASA/Handout via Reuters

The first named tropical storm of the 2014 season, tropical storm Arthur is threatening the 4th of July celebrations along the East Coast.

"Make a plan, get a kit, and stay informed," Carolina coast county fire spokesman Lt. Russ Davies said.

The storm quickly gained strength, with sustained winds of 60 mph on early Wednesday, according to National Weather Service forecasters.

USA Today reported officials from Dare County, N.C. have released a mandatory evacuation order for Hatteras Island along the Outer Banks beginning 5 am  of Thursday. After that time, no one will be allowed on the island.

Residents as well as visitors from out-of-town were ordered to evacuate during daylight before the tropical storm brings high winds, rough seas, dangerous rip currents and possible flooding on North Carolina 12, more so that the two-lane highway is the only way in and out of the island, apart from ferries.

"Don't put your stupid hat on," USA Today quoted Gov Pat McCrory, whose statement was particularly aimed as surfers and swimmers. "Our major goal is to ensure that no lives are lost during this upcoming storm."

Forecasters said Arthur will induce a combination of storm surge and high tide, triggering coastal flooding in parts of Florida's coast near Fernandina Beach that could reach three feet.

Areas in North Carolina could receive as much as two to four feet high of water, with damaging waves. South Carolina could receive flooding one to three feet, while southern Virginia could get inundated by one to two feet.

In Canada, forecasters expect either a direct effect on Nova Scotia, with wind and rain, to a well-offshore track with just rain from the trough, drawing moisture from the tropical system, Cape Breton Post reported.

"With a trough of low pressure expected to eventually merge with Arthur this weekend, we expect the storm to be in a "hybrid state" when it moves through or tracks offshore," Chris Fogarty from the Canadian Hurricane Centre said in a technical information statement on the Environment Canada website.

Tropical storm Arthur's expected arrival in Atlantic Canada has forced the cancellation of the popular music Stan Rogers Folk Festival in Canso, Nova Scotia.

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(Photo: REUTERS/NASA/Handout via Reute / )
Tropical Storm Arthur is pictured off the east coast of Florida in this July 1, 2014 NASA handout satellite photo. July 1, 2014. REUTERS/NASA/Handout via Reuters
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