MOREHEAD CITY — The N.C. Division of Marine Fisheries is asking fishermen to keep a close eye on the progress of Hurricane Dorian and to start getting ready for the storm now.

Weather forecasts show high risk of heavy rain, strong winds and dangerous storm surge along the North Carolina coast later this week.

Gov. Roy Cooper has declared a state of emergency for all 100 counties in North Carolina and is urging North Carolinians to prepare for the storm.

Fishermen should remove fishing gear from the water well before the storm’s arrival. Crab pots and gill nets, especially, are prone to damage and displacement during storms.

Vessel owners should check their safety equipment to ensure all is in working order and plan to remove their boats from the water or take them to safe harbor as the storm approaches. Vessels that remain in the water should be secured with extra mooring lines.

Fishermen should monitor National Oceanic Atmospheric Administration weather radio for storm updates and channel 16 on their marine radios for the latest U.S. Coast Guard emergency broadcasts.

Information about other hurricane preparations, as well as a free mobile app, can be found on the state Division of Emergency Management’s website at ReadyNC.org or download the free ReadyNC app.

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