State officials are ready to start enforcing North Carolina's ban on using sandbags to protect beach property from coastal erosion.
Regulators will begin inspections Thursday of the state's 370 known sandbag structures. Those that are covered with sand and natural vegetation will be allowed to remain in place, but the state will order property owners to remove the estimated 150 others.
State officials estimate the vast majority of the sandbag structures that need to be removed are in Dare County, which includes most of the state's Outer Banks barrier island chain.
North Carolina banned seawalls and other hardened structures in 1985, but officials had allowed sandbags on ocean beaches as a temporary erosion control measure.