A strong coastal low pressure system whipped up waves as high as 15 feet along the Outer Banks and the North Carolina coast earlier this month. Residents and visitors experienced gusty wind and rainy conditions which are the prime elements for coastal erosion, flooding and in some cases homes collapsing into the ocean.
Climate change contributing to higher tides, rising sea levels and stronger coastal storms is to blame according to meteorologists at WRAL.
“Sea level rise is likely to continue to make these problems worse and make it even more challenging to manage these coastal areas,” said David Hallac, superintendent of the eastern North Carolina branch of the National Parks Service.
High water and rain prevented the North Carolina Department of Transportation from opening N.C. Highway 12 in some parts along the Outer Banks. The lone highway connecting the Outer Banks was covered with water and sand in many areas, something usually seen after a tropical system or a winter Nor’easter.