High tide: House worth almost $400,000 in North Carolina devoured by the ocean
On Tuesday, two beachfront homes in the Rodanthe, North Carolina collapsed into the Atlantic Ocean. The first home was devoured by the tides early in the morning. Second collapsed in the afternoon. This one was caught on video — that's about $380,000 gone in 10 seconds. Both houses were located on the barrier island — Outer Banks.
Officials warning that more houses along Ocean Drive could follow as coastal erosion continue. The beach is closed "to protect the public from hazards associated with the collapsed home".
The fate of the houses aren't surprising. Barrier islands are meant to transform with the tides. They protect coastal areas from the storms. Despite changing and dangerous nature of such islands it is a highly desirable place for beach-front properties.
Last winter National Park Service warned that about a dozen other homes were in imminent danger. Relocation of the houses is a viable option, but rarely done.
Rising sea level and heavy storms will continue to erode barrier islands, and by 2050 could completely overrun the chain south of the Wright Brothers Memorial. Yet, more than 35,000 people call the Outer Banks their permanent home.
All images by Cape Hatteras National Seashore.