Local News

One Year Later, Bertha Brings Back Memories

Posted July 12, 1997

— Hurricane Fran's fury is tough to forget. But last season's first Hurricane was just as memorable for many people along the coast. One year ago today, Hurricane Bertha made landfall on North Carolina's coast.

It's tough to remember Bertha on a day where there's barely enough wind to fly a kite, but one year ago howling winds played havoc with hotel rooftop. Those rooftops are back in line now. Gas stations toppled over by Bertha's blast are back in business. Boats thrashed by rocking waves are fixed and still. One year ago Bertha left a mark on Atlantic Beach.

As the storm approached, it didn't seem like there would be much left of the sand dunes protecting the island. High tide comes much closer now. Bertha erased a large chunk of the beach on atlantic beach, much more than Fran did.

Residents like Richard Bradsher have learned their Hurricane lesson. Bradsher believes the people who stayed through Bertha and Fran won't stick around the next time a hurricane rolls around.

Further North in New Bern, Bertha left boat docks leading nowhere. Now new walkways lead to new docks And remember New Bern resident Doc Evans dealing with his Bertha problems? A tree Bertha brought down completely blocked off access to his home.

A year ago, Evans told WRAL's Bret Baier it would be Christmas before he would get back into the building. Seven months later, Evans is still rebuilding.

Believe it or not Evans is still recovering from Bertha. He's just recently cleared out the huge tree that Bertha left for him. The construction continues, and part of the coast continues to put things back together from Bertha, not from Fran.

Bertha goes down in the record books as the strongest hurricane to ever hit North Carolina in the month of July.

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