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Full house at the Carolina Beach Town Council meeting (Photo: Taylor Yakowenko/WWAY)

CAROLINA BEACH, NC (WWAY) — The Carolina Beach Town Council voted unanimously Tuesday night not to allow helicopters to take off and land on the island.

People packed into the council chambers to have their voices heard on the matter of High Tide Helicopters coming to Pleasure Island. The company also has a site in Southport.

Dozens spoke out against the business citing concerns over things like noise, damage to wildlife, a decrease in property values, even the impact of the sound of helicopters on the veterans in the community.

In the end, council sided with the concerns of the people and unanimously decided against helicopters.

“I think the decision went well. We had over 200 people show up to this meeting tonight. And there were a lot of people that had incredible patience. And also I found that there were some tremendous speakers tonight that all had different issues as a reason not to have helicopters on Pleasure Island in Caroline Beach. So I’m so happy and so proud of the people of Carolina Beach for showing up and showing the support for an issue that was really important for us,” said John Wick, a Carolina Beach resident opposed to the helicopters.

Wick said there was a trial of the business back in 2015 and many people who live on the island found the helicopters to be bothersome.

There were about three people at the meeting who spoke in favor of the helicopter business. Mayor Dan Wilcox, although ultimately voting against the business, voiced his concern that the way this situation was handled might scare other tourism businesses away from trying to set up shop on Pleasure Island.


Comment on this Story

  • If Dan Wilcox has concerns about scaring tourism businesses away, he should consider being more impartial to those businesses while he’s mayor. Dating the owner of the helicopter company just didn’t look good, no matter what he “said”. Add to it that, he as mayor AND the current mayor pro-tem were an “item” not that long ago…just sort of smells all around. The next election may prove very difficult at best.

    • Quest For Fair

      Since the mayor can not unilaterally approve helicopter tours, that comes from the council, to bring his personal life into the discussion is just a personal attack. Based on your assessment, anyone on the council who even dates someone with a boat should not participate in council actions regarding the harbor.

      • Facts are facts and I don’t mind a bit bringing them out, especially since you want to force the issue. The town of CB is well aware of the Mayors intentions whether he has “unilateral approval” or not. Influence is influence. When the mayor is intimately involved with the helicopter company’s owner, which is close in age to his own daughter AND that business happens to try to squirm in under the radar, against the wishes and wants of the citizens of the town he governs…well…uh…what does a week-old, dead king mackerel on a hot beach smell like to you?

      • Vog46

        Facts are facts?
        All you bring out is innuendo
        That’s why your posts smell like dead king mackeral


  • Hospice Chaplain

    The same group that crashed one chopper and violated FAA regulations? Good choice. The chopper company isn’t that much of a problem on Oak Island because they fly out of the airport which isn’t that close to the beach.

    • Quest For Fair

      Hospice Chaplain, your post contains inaccurate information. The “group” did not “crash one chopper.” It was a STUDENT pilot making a hard landing. Student pilots don’t fly tours. Only commercially rated pilots do and they have the best safety record of any other form of transportation, including boating. Next, could you please provide your source for the claim the “group” violated FAA regulations?

    • june

      Hospice Chaplain, I think you should check where the Brunswick Jetport is located. Not close to the beach? its within a mile from the ocean which I feel is very close to the beach. There are many tourists what love the helicopter tours of Oak Island and Southport.

  • Quest For Fair

    The way this story was reported, with no opposing viewpoints, is another example of why I left broadcasting after a 22-year career. It’s obvious it’s sensationalism over content. Sad.

    • Is that why you started a helicopter company?

      • Quest For Fair

        I have never owned a helicopter company in my life. So, again, your credibility is in question. I am a pilot, but I do not have a helicopter rating. I only fly fixed wing aircraft.

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