MANTEO, N.C. (AP) -- Dare County officials say residents of Hatteras Island will be able to return to their homes in stages during Labor Day weekend.
A statement from the county Thursday said the first stage of re-entry is scheduled to begin at 6 a.m. Sunday.
The staged re-entry goes alphabetically by resident and hometown and starts with the villages of Buxton, Hatteras, and Frisco. Officials say utility service and other infrastructure in those villages makes returns to them possible.
As conditions improve in the island's other villages, their residents will be able to return.
Hurricane Irene damaged Highway 12 over the weekend. Since then, supply ferries have been running to Hatteras Island but tourists and residents who evacuated have not been able to get there. Some 2,500 people rode out the storm.