The North Carolina Ferry Division says service remains spotty between Hatteras and Ocracoke Islands. State transportation officials have been suspending service on a daily basis since a series of storms in November. Ferry Division spokeswoman Lucy Wallace says the channel routinely experiences shallow waters after high winds and heavy rain:
"The Ferry Division and the Army Corps are always looking at the long term and searching for alternatives. It could be that some deeper water out there has formed another natural channel, so yes, absolutely we're looking at long term solutions, but for right now we need to get it navigable."
Wallace says the suspensions could continue for weeks until a contractor can dredge the channel. Ocracoke Island is home to about 1,000 people and only accessible by ferry. Wallace says ferries from the mainland at Swan Quarter are working overtime to get more passengers to Ocracoke.