Hurricane warning issued; Havelock postpones Freedom Festival

arthur satellite

Tropical Storm Arthur is shown Wednesday afternoon off the coast of Florida.

Published: Wednesday, July 2, 2014 at 11:35 AM.

Storm warnings went up in the area Wednesday as Tropical Storm Arthur gained strength.

As of 5 p.m. Wednesday, the National Hurricane Center said Arthur was near hurricane strength with winds of 70 mph and shifted the forecasted track westward, bringing the storm closer to the coast but keeping it off shore.

With the new projected path, forecasters issued a hurricane warning for the area.

Arthur’s center was not expected to make landfall but could come close enough to the shore that parts of Eastern North Carolina experience hurricane-force winds, according to the National Weather Service in Newport. The hurricane center cited the storm’s expanding windfield and new projected path in issuing the hurricane warning for the area.

Because of the storm, Havelock has postponed its Fourth of July Freedom Festival until Saturday. The event is scheduled to begin at 5 p.m. and concludes with a fireworks display at 9 p.m.

Tropical Storm Arthur formed Tuesday morning off the Florida coast. Tropical storm winds of 39 to 74 mph could hit the area by Thursday afternoon as rain bands begin to impact the area

Water levels are expected to increase in the Neuse River and associated creeks by about 2 to 4 feet, leading to some minor flooding. However, the weather service said the storm would be moving so quickly that major flooding is not expected.

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