Shooting The Breeze

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Hi, and welcome to my "Editor's Blog"! In this space I'll be attempting to keep our readers informed on fast-breaking news and issues affecting our islands. Visit often. There's a lot going on!

Enjoy the Island Free Press and, even more importantly, enjoy our wonderful barrier island!!!

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Goodbye, Frisco Pier

Friday 20 October 2017 at 9:06 pm

BY CATHERINE KOZAK

Even in its wretched, storm-battered state, the teetering Frisco Pier is still an Outer Banks celebrity, with photographs of it all over the Internet, and Facebook pages dedicated to it.

But by the end of the year, the remains of the iconic 55-year-old yellow pier house and rickety pier will be gone – or at least, close to it.

Contractors are expected to start removing the wooden structure and its hundreds of pilings by the end of November or early December, said Dave Hallac, superintendent of the Cape Hatteras National Park Service.

Contractor Charlotte-based DOT Construction – it’s pronounced like polka dot and has nothing to do with NCDOT - is currently building a new ADA boardwalk to the beach at Ramp 55 across from the Graveyard of the Atlantic Museum. When that is completed, Hallac said, the contractor will move its operation up to Frisco.

When a survey was conducted last year, he said, a total of 263 pilings were counted, most of them submerged. Of them, only 124 are above water. Divers were needed to find all the broken-off and buried pilings, and divers will also be needed to remove them.

Depending on the weather, the superintendent said, the $496,000 project is expected to be completed in about a month or two.

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Looking Back A Year After Hurricane Matthew

Friday 06 October 2017 at 9:50 pm

By JOY CRIST

We’re still recovering from Hurricane Matthew.”

This sentiment has been echoed quite a bit in the last year.

It’s a phrase that was heard all across the island after the summer power outage, after the menacing approach of Jose and Maria, and after just about every island-wide setback we’ve encountered since last October.

And it’s 100% accurate. Matthew may have eventually arrived in our area on October 9, 2016, as a post tropical cyclone, but the former Category 5 storm left a lot of local damage in its wake.

Record breaking storm surge levels were recorded in Hatteras village with 5.8 feet of water in some areas. A number of lifelong locals reported that the last time they saw water levels remotely close to Matthew was in 1944. And officials estimated that the storm caused $52 million in damages to Dare County alone.

At least 60-70 homes were flooded in Hatteras Village and had to be renovated or demolished. And with local contractors in high demand - and a long wait to acquire funds from insurance companies, grants, loans, personal savings, and any source that was available – rebuilding was a slow process.

So it’s no wonder that nearly a year after Matthew paid Hatteras Island a brief visit that locals and visitors are still getting back on their feet. Take a drive through Hatteras village, and you’ll still see Matthew-related repairs in progress as homes continue to be raised, renovated, or torn down completely.

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