High water levels will remain an issue across portions of the Carolinas, despite Hurricane Florence being gone for a week and a half. High tides combining with the flood wave coming downstream could cause more problems in the coming days.
Several sections of interstate highways were closed for as long as a week. According to the North Carolina Department of Transportation (NCDOT) all lanes of I-95 through North Carolina reopened last Sunday evening, and all lanes of I-40 reopened on Monday. This was confirmed to FreightWaves by Sonja Bennett-Bellamy of the North Carolina Department of Public Safety which includes the state’s Emergency Management Agency.
Also on Monday, NCDOT opened the following: U.S. 70 in Kinston, one lane of traffic in each direction; U.S. 74 to Wilmington; and NC Ports’ terminals in Wilmington and Morehead City, resuming full commercial truck operations.
Andrew Barksdale with NCDOT’s communications office says road closures have dropped to 295 as of this morning, from a peak of around 1,600. However, sections of multiple roads in several counties are still closed until further notice. Some roads and bridges remain closed even where water has receded because NCDOT needs to inspect them and repair any damages.
In South Carolina state route 9, from route 905 to 57 in Horry, is still closed. It’s scheduled to reopen on October 2, according to the South Carolina Department of Transportation (SCDOT). Also in Horry, state route 22 (Veterans Highway) remains closed until October 4, from route 905 to 90. Several other roads in the area will stay closed at least through the end of September.
The National Weather Service in Wilmington has issued a Coastal Flood Advisory, effective until 12 a.m. on Friday, September 28. Forecasts show many rivers in affected areas of North and South Carolina falling to/below flood stage by the end of the weekend.