MANTEO, N.C. — NC-12 had reopened as of noon Thursday after the coastal highway had been closed since Tuesday.
North Carolina Department of Transportation (NCDOT) officials warned drivers to use extreme caution as part of the road could be covered by water and sand.
Good news! N.C Highway 12 will reopen between Oregon Inlet and Rodanthe at noon today! Motorists should drive with EXTREME caution. In addition, there is still a possibility that the 5:15 p.m. high tide may require another closure if major overwash occurs. pic.twitter.com/QJYAv7MooL— NCDOT NC12 (@NCDOT_NC12) May 12, 2022
This comes after two homes collapsed in one day in Rodanthe at the Cape Hatteras National Seashore Tuesday.
Thursday, volunteers were helping to clean up the debris after both homes washed away into the ocean, causing a lot of debris as seen below.
The public is invited to help Cape Hatteras National Seashore staff clean up some of the collapsed house debris at drop-in volunteer events. In addition to Thursday's cleanup efforts, there will be more on Friday, May 13 from 9:30 a.m. to 11:30 a.m. and 2 p.m. to 4 p.m. All volunteer events are scheduled to begin at the Outer Banks KOA Resort, 25099 N.C. Highway 12 in Rodanthe.
Thursday, the National Park Service announced four more volunteer beach cleanup events have been added to the schedule for this weekend. The new dates and times are as follows:
- Saturday, May 14 - 9:30 a.m. to 11:30 a.m. and 2 p.m. to 4 p.m.
- Sunday, May 15 - 9:30 a.m. to 11:30 a.m. and 2 p.m. to 4 p.m.
NPS will provide supplies to volunteers. Officials suggest wear thick-soled shoes because many of the wood pieces have exposed nails. Children under the age of 18 must be accompanied by a parent or legal guardian.
If planning to clean up the beach after or before the scheduled events, then they should place garbage bags and debris well above the high tide line to ensure the items don’t get washed back into the ocean.
If not currently on Hatteras Island, click here prior to traveling to events to check road closures.
A contractor, WM Dunn Construction, has also been hired by the owners of the collapsed houses and is actively cleaning up debris near the sites of the fallen houses and along miles of beach.
Site supervisor with WM Dunn Construction, Mark Gray, described how the houses that are now at the water's edge used to be protected by sand dunes.
“Two days, that’s been the main question: Why does the government let people build a house in the ocean? It wasn’t the ocean. It was dry land," Gray stated.
The Seashore is also bringing in an NPS cleanup team through its regional office.