WRIGHTSVILLE BEACH, N.C. Hurricane Charley is expected to cross into North Carolina early this afternoon, and forecasters warn floods and tornadoes are possible.
The governor has declared a state of emergency and National Guard troops have been dispatched to key areas to help with any rescues and cleanup.
The National Weather Service says the storm's center is likely to track north along Interstate 95, with wind gusts up to 60 miles an hour.
A mandatory evacuation is in effect for parts of Brunswick County and on Ocracoke (OHK'-ruh-kohk) Island, which was battered less than two weeks ago by Hurricane Alex.
In Sunset Beach, where only a one-lane swing bridge provides access, residents were given three hours to leave this morning before the bridge was closed.