Kitty Hawk, N.C. (WTKR) - A section of N.C. Highway 12 collapsed onto the beach Sunday following a coastal storm.
The collapse happened near Milepost 4 of N.C. 12, known to many on the Outer Banks simply as the Beach Road, near the Black Pelican Restaurant.
A spokeswoman for North Carolina's Department of Transportation tells NewsChannel 3 that high waves from last week's coastal storm washed away about 500 feet of dune along that stretch.
With the dune gone, NCDOT officials closed that portion of N.C. 12 to traffic on Saturday. It was still closed Sunday as waves continued to roll up the beach, cutting into the roadway and causing about 200 feet of large chunks of pavement to collapse.
On Monday, as locals and tourists stopped to take photos, officials surveyed the damage and started repair work.
"It's bizarre. Wow. I mean it's just unbelievable how the water has just washed everything completely out the way it has," Kill Devil Hills resident Crystal Baker told NewsChannel 3's Todd Corillo on Monday.
NCDOT officials plan two phases to fix the roadway. The first, which started Monday, will involve removing the damaged pavement, replacing the sand and rebuilding the roadway.
NCDOT hopes to have it reopen to traffic by the weekend.
The second phase, which does not have a timetable, is rebuilding the damaged dune.
Permits for that work are currently being obtained.
While detours are in place on N.C.12, homes along the closed stretch are still accessible.
N.C. 12 is currently closed to through traffic between White Avenue and E. Balchen Street. Local traffic can access houses and businesses along N.C. 12 within the closure limits; however, cannot cross the area where the damage took place. Through traffic will continue to use the following signed detour route:
- Northbound from N.C. 12: Left on White Avenue, right on U.S. 158, right to E Balchen Street back to N.C. 12.
- Southbound from N.C. 12: Right on E. Balchen Street, left on U.S. 158, left on White Avenue back to N.C. 12.