Outer Banks begins clean up after Hurricane Sandy

KILL DEVIL HILLS, N.C. (AP) — People on North Carolina’s Outer Banks are facing some flooding and damage from Hurricane Sandy, but emergency management officials say it could have been worse.

The Category 1 hurricane brought light rain and winds to the North Carolina coast Monday. Most counties reported no major damage or storm-related injuries, although some roads were flooded, including N.C. Highway 12 — a major thoroughfare.

N.C. Department of Transportation spokeswoman Greer Beaty said the highway was closed Tuesday until crews inspect the road. She said there’s sand and water on parts of the highway, and workers are looking for other possible damage.

A statement from the department later Tuesday said Sandy left deep sand in areas on N.C. 12 on Pea Island from south of the Bonner Bridge to Rodanthe. Crews also discovered pavement damage on the road on the south side of the temporary bridge over the Pea Island breach.

At Rodanthe, crews found damage to the sandbags placed along N.C. 12 after Hurricane Irene hit the area last year.

Beaty said crews also are conducting an on-site inspection of the Bonner Bridge, which spans Oregon Inlet and connects Hatteras Island to the mainland. Inspectors will evaluate the condition of the top part of the bridge and determine how it fared during the storm.

Transportation official say it will likely be Wednesday before inspectors can safely get in boats and examine the water depth around the bridge’s support columns. They will also determine how the sand under the bridge has shifted since the storm passed along the Outer Banks.

FULL SANDY COVERAGE

Ferry service is currently the only way to move people in and out of the area. At least two ferries are up and running.

Currituck County Emergency Management spokesman Randall Edwards said most of the roads in his county were passable. He said the skies were clearing Tuesday morning, though it was windy.

In Carteret County, Emergency Management spokeswoman Joann Smith said there was standing water on some roads. Hyde County also reported no homes were flooded.

In other counties, emergency management officials are still assessing the damage.
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This article was provided by The Associated Press.  (Copyright 2012 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)

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