Power returned to Ocracoke Island on Monday night, and as of Tuesday afternoon, Ocracoke is now operating on transmission power, and the diesel peaking generator has been shut off. However, close to 400 houses had their electrical meters pulled by inspectors due to damage. These houses will not have power restored until an electrician and inspector have signed off on the repair work. Non-resident property owners were also granted access to the island to fix their homes, beginning Tuesday afternoon.
On Hatteras Island, recovery efforts and assistance for residents in need continues, while the tri-villages opened up to visitors on Tuesday at noon. Multiple reports were received of delays with southbound traffic on N.C. Highway 12 in the late morning and early afternoon. Unrestricted access to the village of Avon and northern areas of Buxton will begin at noon on Wednesday, and travelers should expect potential and similar southbound delays.
Additional updates as of 4:00 p.m. on Tuesday are as follows:
Ocracoke Island Updates:
Per Tideland EMC, Ocracoke is now operating on transmission power, and the diesel peaking generator has been shut off. Due to flood damage, Tideland’s Ocracoke office remains closed. Members can call 800.637.1079 to conduct business.
Per a Tuesday afternoon press release, starting immediately, non-resident property owners will be allowed back to Ocracoke in addition to permanent residents.
Property owners must either have an Ocracoke re-entry pass (Red, Yellow, Green or White), Hatteras priority boarding pass sticker, or proof of residency when boarding the ferry to board the ferry. For more information, click here.
Volunteer teams who want to help with Ocracoke Island recovery efforts and are able to be part of a group of four or more can email firstname.lastname@example.org to book passage and receive authorization to enter the island. 24 to 36 hours of advanced notice is required.
“We have had to create this restriction because we do not have the resources to have a large amount of people on the island at this time, AND we will need help further down the road,” said the emergency commodities manager in an online statement, according to the Ocracoke Observer. “Recovery coordination is massive at this time. Thanks for your willingness to help and your patience.”
“Additionally, we cannot provide overnight accommodations on the island due to the extensive damage to structures. Many of our community members remain homeless due to the flooding.
“If you are able to work around those restrictions, please let us know. Ocracoke has always been in a unique situation in terms of access, and this storm that has devastated our community has, in turn, created an incredibly unique and difficult relief effort.
“Please do not misinterpret these restrictions for a lack of gratitude. Ocracoke appreciates every person who contacts us more than you can know, and we would love to have your passionate help if the requirements can be met.”
Wayland J. Sermons, Jr., senior resident Superior Court Judge, and Regina R. Parker, Chief District Court Judge for the Second Judicial District, have issued an administrative order delaying any required court appearances for residents of Ocracoke Island within the district, per the Ocracoke Observer. The order also defers Ocracoke residents summoned to the Sept. 16 jury session in Hyde County to a later date.
In their Joint order, the judges cite the extensive damage and resulting hardships to Island residents from Hurricane Dorian.
Per the Ocracoke Observer, the First National Bank on Ocracoke was flooded and will remain closed indefinitely.
The Ocracoke Health Center is closed, and medical assistance is available at the Ocracoke Volunteer Fire Department, which is the command center for all activities. The Ocracoke post office also is closed indefinitely, said Celeste Brooks, postmaster. However, UPS arrived Monday morning and FedEx will arrive Tuesday.
Those interested in donating goods and services are asked to email mailto:email@example.com about helping, but not to purchase items before emailing.
Cash donations can be sent to either of the churches on Ocracoke by writing a check and sending it to the following places:
Ocracoke United Methodist Church
P.O. Box 278
Ocracoke, NC 27960
Ocracoke Lifesaving Church
P.O. Box 68
Ocracoke, NC 27960
The Ocracoke Observer also published an up-to-date and in-depth story on how to help residents of Ocracoke Island on Monday. Information on how to donate can be found here: https://ocracokeobserver.com/2019/09/09/how-you-can-help-ocracoke-post-dorian/
Hatteras Island Updates
Unrestricted access to the villages of Rodanthe, Waves, and Salvo on Hatteras Island began at noon on Tuesday, and there were multiple reports of delays with southbound traffic on N.C. Highway 12. Unrestricted access to the village of Avon and northern areas of Buxton will begin at noon, Wednesday, September 11, and travelers should expect potential and similar southbound delays.
Priority Three will remain in place for areas south of Buxton Back Road and N.C. 12 (NC SR 1232 at Cape Hatteras Secondary School), including the villages of Frisco and Hatteras. Visitors will not be allowed past the checkpoint at Cape Hatteras Secondary School.
The Dare County Control Group will continue meeting to determine reentry guidelines for the villages of Frisco and Hatteras. Updates will be distributed via the County’s emergency alert system. Sign up to receive alerts via text, voice and email at www.darenc.com/alerts or visit darenc.com/reentry for additional reentry details.
The annual VFD 9/11 lighthouse climb is still scheduled to proceed on Wednesday morning.
The 2019 Day at the Docks event, which was scheduled for September 13-14, has been canceled.
Per a message from the Dare County Schools Superintendent, Cape Hatteras Secondary School (CHSS) suffered damage to roughly a third of the structure, and all efforts are being made to repair the school and get it back up and running as soon as possible. It is hoped that the CHSS can reopen within a week, but this timeline can change. The elementary school is in excellent condition and will reopen when power is restored in all communities.
The Hatteras Library is open regular hours after Hurricane Dorian, but is experiencing issues with their phone line. Customers needing telephone assistance should call the Manteo Library at 252-473-2372.
The U.S. Coast Guard Station Hatteras Inlet stated on Monday that the crew is back and has already begun working on the relief efforts for the local community. “We are working hard to bring our Dare and Hyde county neighbors the help they need after the devastation caused by hurricane Dorian,” said the station in an online statement.
Dare County trash collection resumed its regular schedule on Monday, September 9. Not all areas are accessible for trash trucks, but every effort will be made to pick up trash.
Details have not been finalized for debris pickup, but as the recovery process begins, please begin piling storm related debris into FOUR SEPARATE PILES onto the right-of-way at least 30 feet from fire hydrants. Visit http://www.darenc.com/hurricanedorian/ for information on how to separate debris and to receive updates as details are finalized.
Dare County has received notice of the availability of FEMA granting funds (Flood Mitigation Assistance Program or FMA) for the elevation of homes in unincorporated Dare County. The FMA program provides funding to reduce or eliminate the risk of repetitive flood damage to buildings and structures insurable under the National Flood Insurance Program. The FMA funding is a 75% federal and 25% property owner match.
If you are a year-round resident of unincorporated Dare County and your property has experienced repetitive flooding, federal funding may be available to elevate your home to mitigate flood losses. Manufactured homes, structures elevated on a piling foundation, or structures used for commercial or rental purposes are not eligible for funding consideration. The structure must have flood insurance coverage in place at the time of application.
A community meeting on the Flood Mitigation Assistance Grant Program will be held on Tuesday, September 17 from 3:00 p.m. to 6:00 p.m. in Room 238 of the Dare County Administration Building in Manteo, NC. Applications will be accepted at this meeting or can be secured by contacting Brent Johnson at 252.475.5628 or firstname.lastname@example.org. All applications must be received by the Dare County Planning Department’s Manteo location by the close of business on September 27, 2019. Dare County will submit applications to the State of North Carolina and FEMA for review and evaluation. Submission of an application is not a guarantee of funding.
Updates on where to obtain resources as needed are as follows:
NC Baptist Men and Women Disaster Relief Ministry are feeding residents at a mobile site in Hatteras village. The kitchen unit is set up on the Hatteras-to-Ocracoke ferry parking lot. Hot meals are prepared at the kitchen and distributed on Hatteras Island, and meals are also available at a serving line on the parking lot.
The Frisco Fire Station reported that volunteers will be at the station in the coming days to hand out cleaning supplies, trash bags, and to get names and information from people who have damages. They are also getting a list of volunteers together. Per Larry Ogden of the Hatteras Island CERT team, volunteers will be available to collect info from roughly 8:30 a.m. until 5:00 p.m. daily. The HI Cert team has roughly 55-60 members activated to help with clean-up and other recovery efforts as needed, which is in addition to dozens of volunteers from North Carolina Baptists, and from our local community.
The Avon Volunteer Fire Department has clean-up kits and drinking water available to those who had water in their homes due to Hurricane Dorian. Please stop by the department to pick up supplies and for information on what help is available. A representative of the United Methodist Men will be at the station starting to take down the names of those who need help with cleaning their homes, and work crews will be available starting Tuesday.
Food, toiletries, cleaning supplies, and other essentials are also located at St. John United Methodist Church in Avon. Residents can stop by to get what they need.
The Salvation Army will continue to provide three meals a day on Hatteras Island on at two locations: the Old PNC Bank in Buxton and the Frisco Fire Department. Mealtimes at both locations are 8 a.m. for breakfast, 12 p.m. for lunch, and 6 p.m. for dinner.
A number of stores and businesses are currently open, which includes grocery stores, restaurants and gas stations. Individual business hours may be altered due to continuing recovery effort.
Dare County is available to help Hatteras Island residents in need. Please contact the Department of Health and Human Services at 252.475.4196 if you or someone you know needs assistance. In areas of the county most impacted by the storm, relief workers will be in the field knocking on doors, but please reach out and let county officials know if you need assistance.
Folks who want to donate funds towards recovery efforts can contact the Outer Banks Community Foundation (OBCF) at www.obcf.org/disaster or the Cape Hatteras United Methodist Men, which is a local organization that has been assisting Hatteras Island for 40 years.
Checks can be mailed to:
Cape Hatteras United Methodist Men
PO Box 1591, Buxton, N.C. 27920
Checks should be marked “Hurricane Dorian Relief” and receipts will be sent. 100% of donations are used to address the needs of islanders.