No Return Date Set For Hatteras Island Residents

Officials say no decision has been made on when residents of Hatteras Island will be allowed to board ferries to head home.

Dare County officials met Wednesday with utility crews and decided there hasn't been enough progress in returning power to the Outer Banks island to allow people to return home.

Hatteras Island was cut off from the mainland Saturday after Hurricane Irene torn up several segments of Highway 12, which you can see in this NCDOT photo from Wednesday.

Some residents have been allowed to return to Ocracoke Island, which was farther away from Irene's worst damage.

State emergency coordinators say Hatteras and Ocracoke Islands will remain closed to tourists over the Labor Day weekend, though many state beaches are open elsewhere.


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Comments are posted from viewers like you and do not always reflect the views of this station.
  • by Lat Location: NC on Sep 1, 2011 at 12:15 PM
    Hatteras residents are smart enough to know how to manage when power is out, etc. Some of those returning will bring their own generators, and will help their neighbors clean up, repair, etc. Let them go home and begin the recovery. Insurance will take care of most residents' damage. Govt only needed for roads, which generate tourism/tax dollars.
  • by Rob on Sep 1, 2011 at 11:40 AM
    Steve, There is plenty of power for residents to survive. People are running A/C on Hatteras! Many restaurants are open and waiting for business. If they thought power was the problem they would tell people refrigeration and mimimal lights only. If a house has just 1' of water in it and you get to it within 2 days no problem. Wait two weeks and you have to throw away the whole house down to the studs! That mold is poison. A few thousand dollars damge turns into a hundred thousand dollars because people can not get home. This is why many people refuse to leave. Next time more will stay and maybe some will die because of it.
  • by Steve Location: somewhre on Sep 1, 2011 at 10:33 AM
    Well let me see here... if there is not enough power available for people to survive on the island then there is no point in having residents return. If you can't food, supplies, or run refrigerators than it is dangerous to let residents return to the island. I love how locals down there hate the government... yet will gladly accept the federal emergency money they will be receiving from FEMA. There won't be any gratitude for that though. If you don't want to have to deal with this... then move to Nebraska. There are always going to be issues with hatteras island access when a storm like Irene moves through... deal with it.
    • reply
      by HB on Sep 1, 2011 at 12:28 PM in reply to Steve
      Steve, don't speak for all residents, you obviously are not a local to the Outer Banks, or you would realize what a caring community we have on the island!
  • by Charlene Location: NC on Sep 1, 2011 at 10:14 AM
    uuuum...how do they return with no roads???? jus askin.
    • reply
      by shawna on Sep 1, 2011 at 11:37 AM in reply to Charlene
      ferry services
  • by Bonnie Location: Galax Va. on Sep 1, 2011 at 10:02 AM
    There was five feet of tide in some homes. Does the government imagine that those houses will improve by sitting in the heat for a few more days. Just adds to the cost. Are we free citizens or children who must be ordered about?
  • by christina Location: gloucester, va on Sep 1, 2011 at 09:49 AM
    This is Christina Liebler. My husband Dan and I use to live in Buxton and Frisco. We now live in Gloucester, Va near Yorktown and Williamsburg. Any Hatteras Islanders (whether we know you or not) are welcome to come and stay with us for free while you wait for re-entry. If we run out of room, we have many friends here who will gladly help you out. It gets expensive in hotels. We are kid and pet friendly. Let us know if you need a place to stay and we'll do our best to help out.
  • by Russ Location: Henderson on Sep 1, 2011 at 08:41 AM
    They want to force someone to leave, then not let them back home. The government wants control these peoples lives, but it will throw away billions on people to reproduce that can't even take care of themselves.
  • by Mike Fahey Location: Frisco, NC on Sep 1, 2011 at 08:32 AM
    This exemplifies the problem with even the most well intentioned governance. This is a control issue more than a public safety issue; the lower half of Hatteras is already back in operation, with electric and communications operating, restaurants, hardware and grocery stores serving customers, and household trash pickup occuring on schedule, even if the trucks cannot yet leave the island [a mystery decision of its own since other trucks [UPS, US Mail, food supplies, ice and other service related vehicles are being transported daily . There is no reason for Buxton, Frisco and Hatteras Village residents not to be allowed to return other than possible "control" concerns. The faster they can return, the faster we can recover as a community, period.
  • by Hatteraser Location: wishes Hatteas Village on Sep 1, 2011 at 06:30 AM
    This is getting very expensive for those of us who evacuated with small children, who are living out of hotel rooms.
    • reply
      by christina on Sep 1, 2011 at 09:51 AM in reply to Hatteraser
      If you need a place to stay until you can get back on the island contact us. We are former Hatteras Islanders. My sister still lives in Avon. We are glad to help.
  • by Sam Location: NC on Sep 1, 2011 at 06:14 AM
    They should let these residents back in. If they want to return to start cleaning up and repairing damage, let them...even without power. By not letting them back in, the "officials" are ensuring that next time they ask folks to evacuate, they are not going to go...because they know they won't be able to get back home. Are the "officials" going to pay for these residents' extended hotel stays while they are not allowed to return to their homes?
    • reply
      by Bonnie on Sep 1, 2011 at 08:36 AM in reply to Sam
      Per Sam/ That is exactly why we choose not to leave anymore. It's hard enough to pay and live at home, but to pay and not be at home, with nothing coming in.
      • reply
        by spookie on Sep 1, 2011 at 09:52 AM in reply to Bonnie
        per/ Bonnie - exactly.
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