Friday, July 4 2014, 11:15 AM EDT
Hurricane Arthur Now a Category 2 Storm
Hurricane Arthur officially strengthened to a Category 2 storm just after 9 p.m. Thursday evening.
And forecasters say the odds are increasing that Hurricane Arthur will actually make landfall. But they say even if that doesn't happen, coastal North Carolina is going to feel the impact overnight and tomorrow.
They expect Arthur to pass over or near the Outer Banks early in the day -- bringing rain, heavy winds, storm surge and dangerous rip currents. Its top sustained winds are currently clocked at 90 miles an hour.
The timing is bad for the state's Outer Banks -- where tourism officials had expected 250,000 visitors for the holiday weekend. But North Carolina's governor says it still should be a "beautiful weekend" after the storm passes tomorrow.
And some of the people who are vacationing this week in the Outer Banks are planning to ride out the hurricane. A Virginia man who was on the beach today said he didn't see any reason to disrupt his family's vacation.
A hurricane warning is in effect for much of the North Carolina coast.