RALEIGH, N.C. (AP) -- Gov. Beverly Perdue wants North Carolina citizens to prepare for Hurricane Irene should it come ashore this weekend but says vacationers shouldn't scratch coastal travel plans just yet.
Perdue said Tuesday it's still too early to determine with certainty if and where Irene will touch the state and what effects its rain and high winds could have. She said officials will have a better idea Thursday what people should do. Perdue said until then North Carolina is open for business as the summer vacation season winds down.
She says North Carolina's emergency management operations are the best in the nation and will be ready to respond to the hurricane.
Federal emergency officials are to arrive in the state Wednesday. The state's 24-hour-a-day emergency operations center should open a day later.