Hurricane Irene Aftermath
September 16, 2011 Facebook TwitterMore...

Stumpy Point Emergency ferry shut down by low water


The North Carolina Department of Transportation’s Ferry Division’s emergency route at Stumpy Point temporarily suspended operations at midnight last night due to extreme low tide.
The route is currently not operating. Northeast winds are causing the water depth to be too low for safe travel. The Ferry Division is evaluating the weather and will resume operations once it is deemed safe to cross.

However, the wind is not expected to shift direction until well into Monday.

With the passage of last night’s cold front, a strong high pressure will build over the northeastern U.S. and wedge down into the Carolinas through the weekend as a coastal low pressure area forms offshore.

The pressure gradient between the high to the north and the offshore low will bring strong winds from an easterly direction at least until Monday.  This could continue to keep the water level lower than normal in the sound near Rodanthe through the period.

Forecasters at the National Weather Service office in Newport, N.C., are predicting northeast and east winds of 15-25 knots Saturday and Sunday, perhaps lingering into next week.

The emergency ferries are available only to residents of Hatteras, non-resident property owners, insurance adjusters, critical personnel, vendors, and supply trucks.  Many of the materials for the temporary repairs to Highway 12 in Pea Island are coming to Hatteras on the Stumpy Point ferry.
The ferry routes to Hatteras via Swan Quarter and Cedar Island and through Ocracoke are booked into next week by visitors coming to Ocracoke and Hatteras islands.

County manager Bobby Outten said the county is working with the Ferry Division this morning to open new supply lines to Hatteras.

At times earlier in the re-entry process, some ferries from Stumpy Point came into the Hatteras village ferry docks, but that trip is about 3.5 hours.

Ferry information is available by calling 800-293-3779 (BY-FERRY) and pressing 1, or via Twitter at

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