Passenger ferry makes test run; leaders hope to aid tourism

OCRACOKE, N.C. (AP) – Officials in North Carolina have tested a 91-foot passenger ferry from Boston that they hope will help reverse a trend of declining tourism on the Outer Banks.

The Virginian-Pilot of Norfolk reports ( ) the Provincetown III was used for trips on Hatteras Inlet, which were part of a study conducted by a Raleigh company to determine how to cut down on long lines and improve tourism on Ocracoke Island.

Volkert Inc. plans to complete its study by the end of the year.

Ferry Division statistics show the number of vehicles using the six Hatteras ferries last summer dropped to 115,000, compared to an average of 139,000 over the previous three summers.

Hyde County Manager Bill Rich also says tourists visiting Ocracoke fell by 450 people a day.

Information from: The Virginian-Pilot,

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