Hurricane Dorian on Ocracoke

Park Service opens N.C. 12 to local Ocracoke traffic

N.C. 12 is open for locals and for for those with 4WD vehicles, access to the north end of the island and south dock. Photo by Stacey Sigler

By Connie Leinbach

Part of N.C. 12 on Ocracoke, from the National Park Service campground to the breach area, reopened to local traffic today, said Stacey Sigler, safety, health and wellness program manager for Cape Hatteras National Seashore.

The road was closed after Hurricane Dorian hit Sept. 6 and powerful overwash badly damaged two 500 foot sections and left fallen trees along the road.

The Ocracoke ponies fared well from the storm, Chief Ranger Boone Vandzura had said after the storm, but the fencing did not.

On Thursday, N.C. DOT opened the breach area of N.C. 12 but only for light, 4WD vehicles to be able to access the Hatteras ferry from the north end of the island.

Sigler said today that a pilot car precedes the vehicles in driving along the sound side of the roads in these breach spots.

The schedule for this added route is

  • Hatteras to Ocracoke-South Dock: 6:15, 7, and 9 a.m., 4:45, 6, and 7:30 p.m.
  • Ocracoke-South Dock to Hatteras: 7:30, 8:30 and 10:15 a.m., 6:30, 7:30, and 9 p.m.

This access will be limited to four-wheel drive vehicles that are rated at ¾ ton capacity or smaller (such as Ford F250, GM K2500, Ram 2500, etc.). Trailers are not allowed at this time. 

Reservations are not available on the Hatteras-Ocracoke South Dock route. Vehicles will be loaded by the re-entry priority procedures established by Hyde County. Motorists should arrive 30 minutes before departure time.

With the exception of Ramps 70 (airport ramp) and 72 (South Point), all other beach ramps remain closed, Sigler said.

This story was updated Oct. 5 from an earlier version.

The Cape Hatteras National Seashore opened N.C. 12 today (Oct. 4). Photo: C. Leinbach

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