Local News

Before and After: Hurricanes Alter the NC Coast

Posted Updated
Switch to classic wral.com

WRIGHTSVILLE BEACH — In the Triangle, we got a rare, first-hand lesson in just how much damage a single, relativelyweak hurricane can cause. But on the North Carolina coast, the lesson wasmore than doubled with the arrival of not just one storm, but two.

WRAL-TV5'sTerri Grucadiscovered how a really close look at hurricane damage can revealmore changes than you might think.

Wrightsville Beach took it on the proverbial chin from both Bertha andFran. Joe Freeman owns a home there and he says he'll never forget how itall looked to him when he got his first post-Fran look.

Last year was an active season, particularly for the Carolina coast.But now, less than a year later, It's hard to believe how much thebeaches have been cleaned up. There are just a few distinct remindersmarking mother nature's blow to the shoreline.

Freeman thought he had seen it all. He's owned his home at the beachfor more than 20 years, but when he came back to Wrightsville Beach afterlast year's storms, he discovered there was still plenty he hadn't yetseen. He says the damage to his home was amazing.

But it was something untouchedinsidehis house that showedhim just how much the storms had altered the area -- a photograph of theview from his deck that was taken before the storms.

Freeman decided to snap another shot of the same viewafterthe storms came through.

Wrightsville Beach has its own sand renewal project thatcalls for rebuilding up the dunes every four years. The nextscheduled sand replenishment is scheduled for February, 1998.

ImageFeedback