A Pamlico Sound ferry on approach to Ocracoke Island. Photo: C. Leinbach

From our news services

As of today (Nov. 21) the N.C. Department of Transportation’s Ferry Division will run an alternate schedule on Pamlico Sound between Cedar Island, Swan Quarter and Ocracoke due to critical shoaling issues in the ferry channel just outside of Ocracoke’s Silver Lake Harbor.

The schedule, effective immediately, is as follows:

  • Ocracoke to Cedar Island:  7:30 a.m., 1 p.m.
  • Cedar Island to Ocracoke: 10:30 a.m., 4:30 p.m.
  • Ocracoke to Swan Quarter: 7 a.m., 1:30 p.m.
  • Swan Quarter to Ocracoke: 10 a.m., 4:30 p.m.

Shoaling occurs when sand and sediment fill into a ferry channel, making water depths too shallow for safe operation of the ferry system’s largest vessels. 

The Army Corps of Engineers’ contractor Cottrell Dredging is using the Dredge Lexington in the Bigfoot Slough channel to clear the shoaling. The dredging operation is expected to take about 50 days, depending on weather and sea conditions.

Once water depths in the ferry channel return to acceptable levels, the Ferry Division will resume its regular schedule on both routes.

For Ocracoke ferry schedules, click here.

For up-to-the-minute information on schedule changes on the Cedar Island and Swan Quarter routes, please follow @NCFerryPamSound​ on Twitter. 

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