Environmental groups are taking the case over beach driving along the Cape Hatteras National Seashore to court.
The groups say they've sued the National Park Service for failing to manage off-road vehicles along the Outer Banks beaches. They say the lack of sound regulations has harmed birds and turtles species that breed on the federally protected coastline.
A federal judge in July noted that beach driving is technically prohibited at the park because the park service doesn't have a formal plan governing vehicles.
Some portions of the shoreline already are off-limits due to an interim management plan, but the groups who sued say the plan is not good enough. They intend to sue as well under federal endangered species rules.
The park service didn't immediately respond to a request for comment.