Record rainfall from tropical cyclone Bonnie has
left some ramps in the Cape Hatteras National Seashore flooded and
hazardous for travel and has temporarily closed the Cape Point
Several of the ramps on the seashore have had
standing water in low spots over the past week, but the most flooded
and hazardous are Ramps 43 and 44 in Buxton and Ramp 49 in Frisco,
according to Hatteras Island District Ranger Joe Darling.
According to the seashore's beach access and ramp
report, there is 8 to 10 inches of standing water in the entry way to
Ramp 43, but the ramp is passable. The water at 44 and 49 is so
deep that the report recommends that small and mid-size off-road
vehicles use caution.
The seashore said in a news release that it has
no plans to close any ramps, but late on Saturday, Darling posted
signs at some ramps warning drivers, "Due to extreme rainfall from
Tropical Depression Bonnie, vehicular travel is not recommended past
this location in low clearance vehicles. Portions of the ORV ramp
are flooded with deep water. Enter at your own risk."
On southern Hatteras Island, there are no
flooding problems with Ramp 55 in Hatteras village across from the
Graveyard of the Atlantic Museum. However, the Pole Road, in the
same area is reported to be under a foot of water.
On Friday, June 3, the Park Service reported 7 to
8 inches of standing water at Cape Point Campground, which has made the
campground inoperable for "the foreseeable future."
The Park Service said that, beginning on
Thursday, it paused the online reservation system for Cape Point
Campground for seven days.
"After a week, park staff will assess the
campground and determine if it is safe to allow visitors to reserve
camping spaces," park officials said.
There are no other seashore campground closures.
And anyone with a reservation in the campground will receive a refund
for time during which it is closed.
Rainfall records were set for two days last week
at Billy Mitchell Airport in Frisco. On Memorial Day -- Monday,
May 30 -- 7.09 inches of rain fell at the airport, and on Thursday,
4.33 inches inundated the area, breaking a second record.
A monthly rainfall record for the month of May at
Billy Mitchell also fell. The total for the month was 12.67 inches,
breaking the old record of 11.7 inches, set in 2003. The
normal rainfall for May is 3.57 inches.
The total rainfall at Billy Mitchell for the Bonnie storm event was more than 14 inches.
Currently, the National Weather Service is
keeping an eye on the third tropical system of the 2016 season, which
formed as a tropical depression early Sunday and by Sunday evening had
become Tropical Storm Colin. This storm, which formed in the Gulf of
Mexico, is forecast to move quickly toward the Florida panhandle
today. Then it is expected to move rapidly across northern
Florida and up the East Coast offshore of the Outer Banks Monday night
Depending on the path of the storm, the local
National Weather Service office says Hatteras and Ocracoke could see
another 1 to 3 inches of rain, with a possibility of up to 4 inches.
Click here for the latest beach access update and ramp report from the National Park Service.
For more information on the weekend forecast for Hatteras and Ocracoke islands, go to the local Weather Service website at www.weather.gov/mhx/. Or check out the local office on Facebook at https://www.facebook.com/NWSMoreheadCity/?fref=ts.