Hurricane Arthur strengthens to Category 2 as it nears North Carolina

A man surfs in the fog as strong winds and heavy surf from Hurricane Arthur begin to roll in, on July 3, 2014 in Nags Head, North Carolina. Hurricane warning has been issued for North Carolina's Outer Banks due to approaching Hurricane Arthur. -- PHO
A man surfs in the fog as strong winds and heavy surf from Hurricane Arthur begin to roll in, on July 3, 2014 in Nags Head, North Carolina. Hurricane warning has been issued for North Carolina's Outer Banks due to approaching Hurricane Arthur. -- PHOTO: AFP

MIAMI (REUTERS) - Hurricane Arthur was upgraded to a Category 2 storm with maximum sustained winds at 100 miles per hour (160 kilometres per hour), the US National Hurricane Center said on Thursday evening.

Arthur was fast approaching the coastline of North Carolina and expected to make landfall late Thursday or early Friday morning, forecasters said as weather conditions deteriorated in the Outer Banks, where vacationers were forced to evacuate on the eve of the July 4 holiday.