Large swells on East Coast as Maria heads north

A mandatory evacuation has been issued ahead of Hurricane Maria for visitors on Hatteras Island effective at 12 p.m. Monday.

The storm was centered about 210 miles southeast of Cape Hatteras, North Carolina, Tuesday morning and was moving north at 7 mph.

"Direct impacts from the storm include tropical storm force winds and storm surge of 2-4 feet along the Outer Banks", Hyde County officials said in a press release.

The National Hurricane Center has added a storm surge watch for Kill Devil Hills, Buxton and Manteo to its tropical storm warning.

The hurricane that battered the US territory of Puerto Rico last week has weakened slightly with maximum sustained winds Tuesday morning near 75 miles per hour. On the forecast track, the center of Maria will pass east of the coast of North Carolina during the next couple of days.

As the storm tracks into the North Atlantic at the end of September, some of Maria's rain and wind could brush part of Atlantic Canada.

Hurricane Maria Sept. 25 2017
Hurricane Maria Sept. 25 2017

Puerto Rico Gov. Ricardo Rossello says he's spoken "as recently as last night" to President Donald Trump about the crisis Hurricane Maria caused on the island.

Hurricane Lee is much smaller than Maria, but also better organized.

The five-day tracking model shows Maria maintaining hurricane strength through Tuesday as it makes it way north before turning northeast and heading further out into the Atlantic. You can see from the first shot, which is just south of the new new Bonner Bridge, that they built up huge sand dunes after Hurricane Jose, which cut right across the road, covering it in sand and temporarily closing it. Hurricane Maria lashed the Turks and Caicos islands over the weekend after killing at least 32 in Puerto Rico and Dominica.

While Hurricane Maria continues to slowly slide offshore up the East Coast, we have near record warmth again today.

The National Weather Service in Morehead City, North Carolina, said significant beach erosion is expected north of Cape Lookout.