This story is updated:

As a result of Hurricane Earl, the National Weather Service is becoming increasingly concerned about an extended period of life threatening rip currents for all Eastern NC beaches through this weekend and likely into early next week. Some of this swell is already reaching the coast, with a HIGH RISK for rip currents all beaches Thursday.

In addition the combination of onshore flow, high astronomical tides and Hurricane Earl, swell may lead to minor oceanside coastal flooding this evening (Sept. 8) into this weekend.

As Hurricane Earl, though well out to sea, continues to strengthen in the western Atlantic, it will produce increasing long-period swell along the North Carolina coast, the National Weather Service reported today (Sept. 7).

Some of this swell is already reaching the coast and will result in an elevated rip current threat today.

Lifeguard service has ended for Ocracoke, so beachgoers need to be especially vigilant. For information about rip currents, click here.