Ian causes bridge closures and dune damage, Holden and Sunset Beaches
Brunswick County, NC (WWAY)– Heavy rain and gusty winds from Ian forced police to close the causeway at Sunset Beach to drivers on Friday, as well as the Holden Beach Bridge.
Officers also blocked off several intersections due to the dangerous conditions.
Sunset Beach Chief of Police Ken Klamar says his officers have been working non-stop, looking for potential dangers.
“We have patrols throughout the town watching for downed trees, standing water, that sort of thing. And again, telling people to stay in place because you never know come into an area that has standing water, and it’s very hazardous to drive through standing water at any point.”
Storm surge and wind damage were the biggest concerns.
At times, wind gusts were close to 80 miles per hour.
The surge was so powerful, it pushed debris, broken street signs, and damaged docks along the waterways.
“The most significant thing we’ve seen is storm surge. There has been a lot of water that has come into the area over a quick matter of time it seems.” said Chief Klamar.
The surge also caused significant damage to the dunes at Sunset and Holden Beaches. In some places, the water completely flattened the dunes.
Teams will be out this weekend assessing the damage to see just how much of the towns’ protective barrier was over washed by Ian.
The Sunset Beach Causeway will remain closed until tomorrow when the bridge can be assessed for any issues.
The Holden Beach bridge did reopen today, but is subject to close again if winds are sustained at 45 miles per hour.