NC Governor Pat McCrory and NC Department of Transportation: Save Hatteras Island Beaches! No Bridges on the Beach and in the Surf!
This petition had 342 supporters
Northern Rodanthe has one of the highest beach erosion rates in North Carolina. NCDOT is planning to build a 2-mile bridge in northern Rodanthe in one of two locations. One of those locations is on the current NC 12 easement and that bridge is designed to be "on the beach and in the surf" as erosion moves the shoreline westward. Eventually the beach will be destroyed. The panel of coastal science experts convened by NCDOT for Peer Exchange meetings recommended against this option.
Keep Our Beaches Safe!
The Environmental Assessment, recently released by NCDOT, acknowledges that a bridge on the current NC 12 easement is a public safety concern ("… In addition, the presence of bridge piles in areas where the bridge would be less than 150 feet from shore would be a safety hazard to surfers and other recreational ocean users."). However, the quoted sentence is the only mention of this hazard in the entire document. We are not experts on ocean/beach hazards, but we have observed swimmers, surfers, and children playing on Mirlo beach for many years. This bridge will be a major hazard! In the beginning, when the piles are on the beach close enough to be reached by shore break, the piles will be an "attractive nuisance." Children will play around them, boogie board up the beach toward them (often intentionally), etc. Knowing the force of those waves, it is likely that some children will be slammed into the piles, and head injuries are a real concern, along with broken bones, scrapes, and bruises. As the shoreline recedes further, and the piles are in the littoral trough and eventually on the sand bar, the hazard will become extreme. Waves will push surfers and swimmers into the piles, and scouring is likely to create unpredictable turbulence and exacerbate rip current dangers.
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