NORTH TOPSAIL BEACH – Onslow County officials have requested a federal assessment of damage to the beach and dunes here from the coastal storm earlier this month, a required step in seeking federal assistance for recovery.
Town officials completed a damage assessment last week, according to an announcement Oct. 8 by Carin Faulkner, the town’s assistant manager and clerk. That report was forwarded to county officials who then requested a Federal Emergency Management Agency preliminary damage assessment by the state FEMA office.
FEMA officials were expected to arrive Wednesday but it could be weeks before a decision comes on whether there will be a presidential disaster declaration, which is needed for the town to receive federal assistance. According to reports, it will take about $15.5 million to replace what was lost during the storm.
The storm caused no major structural damage to the buildings and homes in the beach town but the shoreline and dunes were “significantly” damaged, according to town officials. There were several dune breaches and significant dune loss along the town’s 11 miles of shoreline. Nearly all dune damage was in areas that had not been renourished in the shoreline-restoration project that was completed in June.
Officials said the project brought the town into compliance with FEMA’s requirements for an “engineered beach,” making it eligible for FEMA public assistance program money to replace material lost from the beach during a presidentially declared disaster.
The storm damaged about 100 crossovers and left a large amount of debris on the shoreline.
The town posted on its website post-storm aerial video of the shoreline.