used to load
vehicles onto the emergency ferry running from Stumpy Point to Rodanthe
and Hatteras was damaged by a piece of heavy equipment this afternoon
and could be shut down for 24 hours.
The shutdown comes as residents of Hatteras Island who evacuated were
lining up to return home. It was only last night that Dare
opened the re-entry process to all residents and abandoned a previously
announced schedule of re-entry by village and first letter of the
resident’s last name.
According to Allen Burrus, vice-chairman of the Dare County Board of
Commissioners, a large truck carrying a piece of heavy equipment was
leaving the ferry at Stumpy Point when the load slipped, caught a metal
beam on the ramp, and bent it.
The ramp, he said, cannot be operated, and an engineer and repair
personnel are on the way. There are three ferry slips at Stumpy Point
but only one has a ramp to load and off-load vehicles.
Burrus said the official word from the county is that the ferry
operation will be shut down for 24 hours, but it is possible that it
will be repaired in a shorter time.
Buffy Reed of Hatteras village was in line to come back when she was
told by a Raleigh television reporter about the shutdown.
About a half hour after the accident, she said, the people in line
still had no official word and, by her estimate, more than 80 vehicles
were in the line.
Later, she said, a state trooper told her that officials were about to
tell everyone in line to turn around.
Today’s re-entry is for Hatteras Island residents only, and they must
have a driver’s license with a Hatteras Island address.
However, Reed said that she was walking down the ferry line and there
were vehicles from out-of-state, including an ORV trailing a boat, both
with West Virginia license plates, and an RV with Florida plates.
Visitors and non-resident property owners are not being allowed on the