Crews in Oak Island and Bald Head Island continued cleanup efforts Tuesday in the wake of Hurricane Dorian, blamed for at least three deaths in North Carolina and at least 50 - possibly many more - in the Bahamas.
No serious injuries were reported in Brunswick County, although there was considerable damage to homes in the The Farm in Carolina Shores, Crow Creek and along parts of U.S. 17. Authorities confirmed the area was struck Thursday by a tornado.
On Bald Head Island, ferry service was back to normal by Sunday, and crews worked through the weekend to removed downed trees from roads and public property. At one point, North Bald Head Wynd was 80-percent blocked by trees.
Bald Head residents are asked to put vegetative debris beside the road and not block utilities or communications equipment. Those who run out a safe space to pile limbs may contact the Village and request a work order.
Officials said crews may be cleaning up secondary streets the rest of the week, if needed. Mulch is available at no charge at the Timber Creek Site near the boat and trailer storage area off North Bald Head Wynd.
Caswell Beach reported no structural damages and it was not necessary for the town to pump water from Caswell Beach Road, said Town Administrator Chad Hicks.
On Oak Island, workers were scraping and stockpiling sand at several beach accesses that were overwashed. Trash and recycling cans are being returned to access points.
A windshield damage assessment by Oak Island showed 86 properties with some degree of damage, mostly residences. Two had damages exceeding 25-percent and one was damaged by 50-percent, the report stated. The remaining damages were listed at less than 25-percent.
While structures around it apparently fared well, Oak Island Auto Wash lost a large portion of its roof. “Unfortunately, it’s going to be a while before we wash another car,” said owner Mark Tinsley, adding he was grateful he had insurance.
“Town staff worked long, hard hours to make sure the island citizens and infrastructure were protected,” said Oak Island Mayor Cin Brochure. “All systems were back up and running by Sunday morning.” Restrictions - except for visitors - were lifted Friday morning and non-residents were allowed back on the island Saturday morning, she noted.
Brochure said residents helped by cooperating with the short-lived curfew. She said flooding was not bad because the ground was not saturated before the storm hit.