RALEIGH -The following are highlights from this week at the N.C. Department of Transportation. The stories below are also featured in NCDOT Now, the department's weekly newscast.
Summer Ferry Schedule
Longer days and warmer weather mean vacationers are starting to travel to the North Carolina coast. Once there, they'll be greeted with extra ferries to help them reach their destination as the North Carolina Ferry System transitioned to its summer schedules this week.
The popular Hatteras-to-Ocracoke route is now running 36 daily round-trips, along with unscheduled shuttle runs to help when backups occur. Additionally, the Ferry System has increased the trips scheduled for the two routes crossing Pamlico Sound.
Drivers should arrive early to beat the morning traffic peak and plan for possible delays due to road construction on U.S. 70 and N.C. 12.
And while at the coast, visitors can help celebrate the 70th anniversary of the state Ferry System that was established in 1947 with a route between Mann's Harbor and Roanoke Island. Throughout the summer, the Ferry Division will be hosting shipyard tours and even holding a contest in which visitors can submit their best ferry photos through social media.
For more information on ferry schedules and the division, NCDOT.gov.
With hurricane season beginning June 1, Governor Cooper and N.C. Emergency Management staff are urging North Carolinians to make sure they are prepared now.
"To not have a plan is not a good plan," said Michael Sprayberry, Director of the Division of Emergency Management. "I can tell you that just during Hurricane Matthew we had over 2,300 rescues. Everybody needs to be prepared to be self-reliant, the longer the better. If it's something that's widespread it may be a while before someone gets to you."
One way to get ready is by putting together an emergency supply kit. This should contain adequate supplies to get through the storm and afterwards. Make sure to have enough non-perishable food and water to last each family member three days to a week.
Other essential items to have ready include:
Copies of insurance papers and your ID in a watertight plastic bag
A first aid kit
A weather radio and batteries
Hygiene items such as a toothbrush, toothpaste and soap
After the storm has passed, remember to never drive through flooded waters or around barricades. It only takes one foot of water to sweep a vehicle away, so if line markings on the road aren't visible, turn around -don't drown. Trying to save a few minutes on travel is not worth your life.
For more tips on how to make sure your family is prepared for a hurricane, go to ReadyNC.org.