Resident complaint prompts changes in Carolina Beach no-wake-zoneNew Hanover County turns down…

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The town’s no-wake zone could be increasing in size if Town Council approves a resolution to expand it at an upcoming meeting. (Port City Daily/Courtesy Carolina Beach)

CAROLINA BEACH — No-wake-zones help protect property, wildlife, and helps with boater safety; now, thanks to the complaint of a concerned resident, the Town of Carolina Beach is looking to expand it’s own no wake zone.

“A ‘No Wake Zone’ is an area within which vessels are required to travel at idling speed-slow speed that creates no appreciable wake. North Carolina General Statute §75A-15 authorizes the N.C. Wildlife Resources Commission (NCWRC) to establish water safety rules solely in the interest of mitigating water safety hazards,” according to the NCWRC.

The changes were initially proposed by a resident of the Oceana neighborhood, Olin T. Furr, who requested the Wildlife Resources Commission implement an expanded no-wake-zone

“The Commission does not enact no wake zones to mitigate erosion, noise, and property damage. There is no North Carolina statute that establishes no wake zones around docks and piers,” N.C. Wildlife Resources Commission.

“An NC wildlife officer conducted an assessment of the area and agreed with Mr. Furr’s concerns which included:

  1.  The speed from boaters has caused many safety concerns with other users in the area.
  2. The wake from boaters threatens to damage property in the area,” according to the Town Council agenda.

However, state regulations do not permit the creation of no-wake zones to mitigate property damage and erosion.

“The Commission does not enact no wake zones to mitigate erosion, noise, and property damage. There is no North Carolina statute that establishes no wake zones around docks and piers,” according to N.C. Wildlife.

Implementing the new no-wake zone will cost the town about $5,000 for new signage, then the town is responsible in perpetuity — that is, forever — to maintain the no-wake area. Once the new area is established, the N.C. WRC will enforce the no-wake zone.

If the resolution is approved the town will have to apply for a Coastal Area Management Act (CAMA) permit to install buoys and pilings and the complete approval process can take up to eight months.


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