Island Free Press: N.C. 12 expected to reopen today, minor coastal flooding possible through midday

Mirlo Beach at high tide on Monday. [photo by Lori Douglas]

By Joy Crist, Island Free Press
Another round of minor ocean overwash is possible on Hatteras Island with Tuesday’s 11:00 a.m. high tide, but impacts should be confined to locations with severe dune damage from the last two days, per a recent update from the National Weather Service (NWS) Newport / Morehead City office

Minor coastal flooding is also expected along the soundside on Ocracoke and Hatteras Islands, and particularly south of Cape Hatteras, but water levels will not be as high as Sunday and Monday.

N.C. Highway 12 remained closed as of Tuesday morning, however, North Carolina Department of Transportation (NCDOT) crews were continually working to remove sand and water from the roadway, and the NCDOT announced that the highway will likely reopen on Tuesday.

“NC12 is still closed this morning between Basnight Bridge & Rodanthe,” stated the NCDOT in a social media update. “We are confident we can have this stretch reopened and safe for travel today. Timing will depend on 11 a.m. high tide effects. Avoid travel here until we give the all-clear.”

N.C. Highway 12 closed on Sunday between Rodanthe and Oregon Inlet, and has remained closed over the past two days, due to breeched dunes and multiple cycles of ocean overwash.

Hatteras-Ocracoke ferry operations are running on Tuesday, however, they are currently running a one-boat schedule, per a recent update from the N.C. Ferry System. Departure times from Hatteras are 6 a.m., 9 a.m., Noon, 3 p.m., 6 p.m., 9 p.m., and midnight, and departure times from Ocracoke are 4:30 a.m., 7:30 a.m., 10:30 a.m., 1:30 p.m., 4:30 p.m. 7:30 p.m. and 10:30 p.m.

Standing water was reported on several stretches of N.C. Highway 12 where ocean overwash has occurred over the past two days, and specifically in northern Buxton, Avon, and the Muirlo Beach area of Rodanthe. Residents and visitors are advised to drive slowly through areas of standing water, as saltwater can damage vehicles.

The coastal storm has moved away from the Outer Banks area, and weather conditions will continue to improve on Tuesday with warmer than normal temperatures. For more information on the local forecast, visit www.weather.gov/mhx for general weather information, or the National Weather Service office in Newport / Morehead City’s Facebook page at https://www.facebook.com/NWSMoreheadCity/.

Buxton on Monday morning. Photo by Matthew Coats
Mirlo Beach at High Tide on Monday. Photo by Lori Douglas.
Avon midday on Monday

This story originally appeared on OBXToday.com. Read More local stories here.