March 6, 2018


Highway 12 Expected to Reopen This Evening
After Longer-Than-Normal Winter Storm



By JOY CRIST




NCDOT reports that N.C. Highway 12 remains closed in both directions between the Herbert C. Bonner Bridge and Rodanthe due to ocean overwash.  The road is expected to reopen by 6:30 p.m. on Tuesday, March 6.

“Our crews are working extremely hard to meet the 6:30 p.m. target for reopening both closed sections of N.C. 12,” said NCDOT in a social media post. “As long as we don't find any structural damage and the high tide cycles continue to normalize, we expect to get N.C. 12 completely open to all traffic late this afternoon.”

The nor’easter that arrived on Friday and which continued to bring high surf to the islands through early Tuesday morning was not an unusual storm in terms of strength, but was unusual for its duration.

“The biggest thing with this [storm] was how long it lasted, and how long the winds were sustained.” said Meteorologist Chris Collins from the National Weather Service Newport / Morehead City office. “It was not particularly larger than any other system, [but] the duration made it severe.”

“It was how slow it was moving - and the duration of the wind - that made it worse than normal.”

Roads were beginning to clear as of Tuesday morning, allowing NCDOT to work on repairs in earnest. The NCDOT reported that area road conditions were as follows

  • Bonner South to Rodanthe – Only remaining areas of deep sand are just north of the NPS visitor center and at the “S curves” north of Mirlo Beach. Pockets of standing water on the roadway the entire length of N.C 12. Currently Impassable.
  • Rodanthe South to Hatteras – Standing water has receded, sand on road on the north end of Buxton. Open and passable.
  • Ocracoke - Moderate overwash at last high tide pushed additional sand onto N.C. 12, but one full lane is partially clear. Work will continue today on those efforts. Standing water remains on N.C. 12. Additional loaders and an operator have been sent to assist efforts. If needed, NCDOT will move additional resources to the Island. Currently Impassable.

Residential trash collection for Rodanthe, Waves, Salvo, and Avon will be postponed from Tuesday, March 6 to Wednesday March 7.

The Fessenden Center will be open on Tuesday, March 6, but all scheduled fitness classes and activities are cancelled. Dare County Schools on Hatteras Island were also closed on Tuesday.

Coastal Flood Warnings remain up for Outer Banks Dare County, with a Coastal Flood Advisory for Ocracoke, and High Surf Advisories for Carteret County until 1 p.m. today.

For more information, visit www.weather.gov/mhx for weather forecast information, or the National Weather Service office in Newport / Morehead City’s Facebook page, https://www.facebook.com/NWSMoreheadCity/.


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