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Two homes collapse into the ocean as tidal flooding impacts the Outer Banks

The homes were on Ocean Drive in Rodanthe. No one was in them when they fell into the water.

RODANTHE, N.C. — Officials with Cape Hatteras National Seashore said two oceanfront houses in Rodanthe, N.C. collapsed into the water on Tuesday.

No one was inside the first home, located at 24235 Ocean Drive, when it fell into the water. National Park Service officials said they would be working closely with the homeowner to coordinate cleanup activities.

The second house to collapse was at 24265 Ocean Dr. Nobody was in that home, either.

The Cape Hatteras National Seashore shared a video on Facebook of the second home falling into the waves.

Officials said people should use caution on the beach and in the ocean along Hatteras Island as debris is being spread widely.

The beach was closed along all of Ocean Drive in Rodanthe to protect people from hazards associated with the homes, and because there are other houses that could collapse.

Shortly before 1:30 p.m., a spokesman for the Seashore said law enforcement would close down Ocean Drive.

Back in February, another house on Ocean Drive collapsed, which resulted in debris in the Atlantic Ocean and along the sand.

“Unfortunately, there may be more houses that collapse onto Seashore beaches in the near future,” said David Hallac, superintendent, National Parks of Eastern North Carolina. “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.”

Credit: Cape Hatteras National Seashore/National Park Service

In addition to the home collapses, strong winds and tidal flooding also shut down the Marc Basnight Bridge early Tuesday morning. 

The North Carolina Department of Transportation showed pictures of flooding and overwash near the Pea Island Visitor Center as well as in areas in Buxton and North Hatteras Village.

A family visiting from Pennsylvania said they had to change their vacation plans.

“We wanted to go see the Hatteras Lighthouse and this kind of sucks," said Kelsey Jordan. 

George Schaff and his family came from Minnesota. They got close to the bridge and couldn't believe the rough and strong winds taking place in the area. 

“Every day has been like a windstorm like this. You keep waiting for the wind to break and it doesn’t seem to get any better," said Schaff. 

Cape Hatteras National Seashore officials said they will soon work with the people who own the collapsed homes and start the cleanup process.

Due to the flooding and overwash, leaders with Dare County Schools say Cape Hatteras Elementary and Secondary Schools worked virtually on Tuesday.

NCDOT explained on their Facebook page that Tuesday's afternoon high tide worsened the conditions along N.C. 12 and the road will remain closed on Wednesday.

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