A coastal storm caused extensive damage along a coastal area of North Carolina.
Following weather forecasts of an Atlantic Ocean storm system, high winds from the unnamed storm caused coastal erosion that swept away some homes on the state’s Outer Banks.
The incident is said to have shed light on the growing risks of living along the eastern seaboard of the United States.
Related natural disasters in the past have had similar consequences, as ocean waves or currents are pushed inshore by high winds, causing unseasonal high tide and coastal flooding.
(Photo: ALEX EDELMAN/AFP via Getty Images)
At least two homes in part of the Outer Banks in the coastal town of Rodanthe, Dare County, North Carolina were swallowed up by the Atlantic Ocean due to the powerful coastal storm.
Residents of the area are at risk as sea water moved closer to their homes from Saturday May 15.
The storm wreaked havoc for most of the week as its water and sand rendered North Carolina’s Route 12 impassable.
The road connects the city to the Upper Outer Banks.
A vacationer and her family were also caught in the storm, forcing them to extend their supposed getaway due to highway closures and canceled flights, as reported by AccuWeather.
Additionally, residents of the collapsed houses were forced to evacuate after water entered the first floor.
There were no immediate reports of deaths or injuries in the area.
Read also : US Weather Forecast: Coastal Storm to Bring Heavy Rain and Snow to New England
Real estate by the sea
According to the Washington Post, US government officials and scientists say climate change is likely to contribute to worsening coastal erosion.
Although three homes have been washed away along the Outer Banks by natural hazard in the past year, many out-of-state buyers are still buying real estate in beachfront areas.
In August 2021, a US national bought a four-bedroom waterfront home for $550,000 along Ocean Drive in Rodanthe hoping for better views of the Atlantic Ocean.
The buyer would also have believed that the house would be an excellent site for visitors.
However, similar coastal erosion led to the collapse of his house, according to the American media.
Local authorities also inspected the house and deemed it already unsuitable for occupancy.
Climate change and coastal erosion
In keeping with the Washington Post’s statement on climate change, other reports have linked the climate crisis to a host of weather events, including coastal flooding, not only in the United States but around the world.
According to the European Commission (EC), the executive governing body of the European Union (EU), climate change is having devastating environmental consequences for coastal and marine areas in European coastal areas.
The EC pointed out that global sea level rise due to global warming contributes to coastal erosion.
Additionally, a storm surge or tidal surge also exposes coastal communities to the risk of coastal flooding.
The United States Geological Survey (USGS) has also pointed out that climate change-induced extreme waves and extreme winds can also add pressure on coastal systems, where such a notion has been “very much ignored” before.
The USGS emphasized the impact of coastal flooding along coastlines, especially as the climate crisis raises sea levels around the Pacific Ocean and Arctic Ocean.
Related article: Coastal Storm Update: Powerful storm system to be felt on Atlantic Coast from May 10, NWS issues flood warnings
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