Hatteras Island described as 'ghost town' as locals, visitors flee weather

On Monday it was the tourists evacuating Hatteras Island and on Tuesday many locals followed their lead, deciding to get out.

OUTER BANKS, N.C. (WVEC) -- On Monday it was the tourists evacuating Hatteras Island and on Tuesday many locals followed their lead, deciding to get out.

"You definitely have to be prepared and take it seriously because it's Mother Nature its a powerful thing," said Blake O'Sullivan, who was evacuating his Hatteras home.

Whether looking up the beach, or down the street, Hatteras felt like a ghost town Tuesday.

As of Wednesday, visitors are not allowed south of the Bonner Bridge. Emergency crews and residents may cross the bridge, but tourists are prohibited. 

Resident Eric Miller also decided to leave, as Highway 12 slowly began to flood, ankle deep water for a quarter of a mile and rising. Miller didn't want to be stuck come high tide.

"This is salt water, it's not fresh water, unless you wash your car off pretty quick everything is going to start to rust and it messes with all your censors when all that water rushes up in there," said Miller.

Then there were long time home owners, like David Herrick, who said they aren't going anywhere.

"We just didn't get the sense that this was a serious storm, we were tracking it, watching it very closely, and it was going off shore we were more concerned if there was going to be a problem it was going to be a storm surge," said Herrick.

Herrick has road out storms before it just comes with the territory when you take up residency on the Outer Banks.

"If we thought we were threatened at all we would have left but we didn't feel particularly threatened," said Herrick.

That being said, he's glad the tourists were evacuated.

"There is a chance the road could have gotten broken up and you'd have 10,000 people stuck here," said Herrick.

If for any reason those who stayed behind find themselves in an emergency police and firefighters are standing by waiting for that call.

"Don't worry, just be in prayer, and we are here to help, we'll do the best we can out there," said volunteer firefighter Montrell Berry.

© 2017 WVEC-TV


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