Updates on Hurricane Ian

Impacts from Ian will increase during the afternoon and persist into the evening. Conditions will improve tonight from south to north into early Saturday morning.  Since the last briefing, there has been a slight shift in the track and the National Weather Service is expecting higher wind gusts across the area.

Here are the key takeaways from the latest NWS briefing (which is posted here https://www.weather.gov/ilm/briefing):

  • In the areas with the strongest wind gusts expected down trees, power outages, and potentially some structural damage. Winds will peak this afternoon/evening with improvement late tonight into early Saturday morning.
  • Dangerous surge is expected with the worst impacts during the high tide today with some coastal roads flooded, significant erosion, and damage to docks, especially where the peak surge is coincident with high tide.
  • Heavy rainfall will continue this afternoon and early evening with flash flooding impacts. Flooding will be especially pronounced near low-lying and other prone locations. Drier weather is expected to develop generally from south to north this evening.
  • A few tornadoes are possible, with the risk highest this afternoon and early evening, especially from near Horry County northward into southeast NC.
  • Very hazardous marine conditions will continue through Saturday.

The next NWS briefing will be at 6:30 p.m. and will be posted after that time HERE.

Current Conditions:  The Village has shared several photos and videos from around the island on social media.  The storm surge has been the greatest impact. Dock A and B at the ferry landing are underwater as is a good bit of the bulkhead at the Bald Head Island Marina. Bald Head Creek’s waters are also high, photos of the Village’s Creek access show high water, yet the dock and kayak launch remain intact and not submerged.  The intersection of Federal Road and Muscadine Wynd is impassable due to rising water on both sides of the road.  An area of Cape Creek Road in Middle Island is also underwater. Several other low-lying roads that usually flood are now flooded.  Most of the vegetative debris so far has been small, and at least one tree has been removed from the roadway.

Islanders are encouraged to continue to shelter in place today and into the evening and especially as it gets dark.

According to the briefing the Village received from National Weather Service at 2:00 p.m., the surge impacts are due to roll over in the next few hours and the next high tide should not be as severe. The wind is expected to continue over the next several hours, so a power outage is possible. Please make sure you are prepared before it gets dark.

Ferry Service:

Bald Head Island Transportation, Inc. has announced the following:

Ferry Services are Suspended

Due to continuing severe weather from Hurricane IAN, the Bald Head Island Ferry is suspending all operations Friday, 9/30/2022.  Ferry service will resume Saturday morning, 10/1/2022 on our normal schedule.

Please monitor their website for updates. 

Village Operations:

Essential public safety staff is still on the island to respond.  Please call 911 if you need assistance. Crews are ready to immediately remove any emergency debris. Additional staff is ready to mobilize and clear Village wynds of any other debris after the storm passes and as soon as the ferries are operational.

The suspension of the ferry service impacted the delivery of the USPS mail today. We expect that the earliest the Village will be able to put it up will be tomorrow (Saturday).