Winds leads to low water levels, beached boats in Washington

WASHINGTON, N.C. (WNCT) — Strong winds across eastern North Carolina have led to widespread reports of damage and power outages.

In Washington, the strong sustained winds have caused a decrease in water level, ultimately dry-docking some boats, several of which are sitting on the base of the Pamlico Sound.

The waterfront has been packed with residents trying to get a look at the rare phenomenon.

Matt Butler with South Rivers, a non-profit that monitors the Neuse and Tar Pamlico river basins, said it all has to do with the strength and direction of the wind.

“That wind pushes the water out faster and out farther so we get low water conditions,” said Butler. “And it happens anytime we get a northwest wind, but since we’re getting the strong, more sustained winds, it just makes it more pronounced.”

He said it’s hard to tell what kind of damage the boats will have.

“”Because our substrate is pretty muddy, there’s not a whole lot they can do,” Butler said. “Those boats will sit there and rest on the bottom until the wind shifts, and the water comes back into our river system.”

The water is so low there were reports of people walking out onto the sand bars.

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