CAPE HATTERAS, N.C. (WGHP/WAVY) — Debris from two homes that collapsed into the water along the Outer Banks has become a danger for those visiting the shore.
The National Park Service reports that visitors to the beach between Rodanthe and Salvo should wear hard-soled shoes. There is also “sharp” debris south of Salvo. Some of the debris could be covered in sand and may not be immediately visible.
“While much of the large debris has been removed by a variety of beach cleanup efforts, miles of small pieces of debris remains on and under the surface of the beach,” NPS reports. “The Seashore is aware of the presence of wood with exposed nails, splintered wooden fragments and other debris that could be harmful to beachgoers without hard soled footwear.”
The two homes collapsed on May 10, one of which was caught on video. The two houses were unoccupied at the time.
The National Park Service shared news of the first collapse at 24235 Ocean Drive in Rodanthe on May 10 and said the beach was closed to protect the public from hazards.
Hours later, officials reported that a second home, at 24265 Ocean Drive in Rodanthe, collapsed. It was captured on video and shared by the park service. One final wave sent the home crashing into the ocean below.
This is the same area where a home collapsed into the ocean back in February. That house was at 24183 Ocean Drive.
“Unfortunately, there may be more houses that collapse onto Seashore beaches in the near future,” David Hallac, superintendent of National Parks of Eastern North Carolina, said at the time. “We proactively reached out to homeowners along Ocean Drive in Rodanthe after the first house collapse and recommended that actions be taken to prevent collapse and impacts to Cape Hatteras National Seashore.”
Several homes have collapsed over the years on the Outer Banks, as erosion has left many homes built years ago now right at the edge of the ocean. Records show both homes that fell on Tuesday were built in the 1980s.
NPS adds that erosion at the Buxton Beach Access is uncovering pieces of decommissioned military facilities in the area. There are now uncovered PVC pipes and other items that were previously underground.
Crews are working to cut the pipes and remove the debris.