UPDATE: Ocracoke Island Opens Sunday Morning

By: Carly Swain
By: Carly Swain

Back in business: that is the official word for Ocracoke Island as of 7 a.m. Sunday .

The first ferries since Hurricane Arthur are scheduled to push off toward the island at 7 a.m. from both Cedar Island and Swan Quarter. A ferry from Hatteras will leave for Ocracoke at 7:35 a.m. Sunday.

After the category 2 hurricane took out 45 power poles, Tidleand EMC said had the island on a rolling grid of electricity. Power was supplied to a section at a time for three hours and the sections switched off on a rotating shift.

By 10 p.m. Saturday, crews said all the lights were back on.

The state of emergency has been lifted.

Hyde County advised the National Park Service Campground on Ocracoke is closed for now.

If you are looking to visit Ocracoke or another part of the Outer Banks, you can find a complete ferry schedule by clicking here.


It could be Sunday night before power is fully restored to Ocracoke Island.

Some 40 electric poles were downed by Hurricane Arthur on the island, according to Hyde County.

The co-op has encountered problems energizing the Ocracoke generating plant due to high electrical loads.

The Ocracoke generator is only designed to provide 3 megawatts of peaking power during hot summer days. To utilize the generator in an emergency situation, the island’s electric circuits can only be energized in rotating sections.

When attempting to energize one-third of the island today, electric loads exceeded rated generator capacity.

Tideland says island residents and guests must observe the strictest conservation methods possible if they hope to have any power supply prior to Sunday night.

They recommend that Ocracoke residents and guests limit their electric loads to refrigeration and fans and avoid air conditioning use.

The county says there was some roof damage and downed trees by the hurricane, while Highway 12 on the north end of the island does have some overwash.

Pamlico Sound ferries resumed Friday afternoon. The county is urging visitors to leave the island as ferry fees have been waived.

No visitors are being allowed back on the island, while residents will be allowed back on starting Saturday with proper documentation.

A curfew on the island remains in effect from 10:00 p.m. to 6:00 a.m. until power is fully restored.

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Ferry service will end Thursday afternoon on Ocracoke Island.

Hyde County says the last ferry will leave at 5:00 p.m.

The island is under a voluntary evacuation, while authorities have announced a curfew starting at 8:00 p.m. and lasting until 8:00 a.m. Friday.

All alcohol sales on Ocracoke are banned as of 5:00 p.m.

Hurricane Arthur is projected to become a category two storm, with a storm surge of between three and five feet.

Hyde County recommends visitors leave as soon as possible and residents prepare for potential serious impacts.

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There's now a voluntary evacuation for Ocracoke Island.

Hyde County has declared a countywide state of emergency and the voluntary evacuation for the island taking effect at 2:00 p.m.

That state of emergency temporarily suspends tolls on Pamlico Sound ferries.

The county says the island is expected to encounter sustained hurricane winds starting after 9:00 p.m. Thursday and continuing until 10:00 a.m. Friday. The storm surge is expected to be between zero and three feet.

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