What is our purpose?

CBIA wants inform the community about issues surrounding the Inlet. We also hope to schieve the following:

Raising of Funds
To coordinate the raising of funds for the long range dredging, Maintenance, and maintaining safety for commercial, pleasure, emergency traffic through Carolina Beach Inlet for city, county, federal and any other source.

Inform & Educate
To inform and educate the public and governments of the economics and benefits of keeping Carolina Beach Inlet dredged and maintained for safety.

Strong Voice
To provide a united and strong voice to any municipal, governmental, or other regulatory or rulemaking body.

Ready to join us? Learn more here.

The Army Corps of Engineer’s next project: To clear sand from Carolina Beach Inlet

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As of Sept. 15, a state-of-the-art dredging vessel based in Wilmington returned home from Florida and its next project is to deepen the Carolina Beach Inlet. This is crucial for the economy and safe travel for commercial and recreational boater throughout the waterways. Though Murton will only have three days to dredge before heading to Morehead City and the Outer Banks, Barry Stull, a crew member said they will give them their best while there. The Murden will only be able to dredge 8 to 10 feet, but this will definitely improve navigation throughout the channels.

The crew aboard the Murden will have to take into consideration that in order to access the inlet’s mouth, they will have to dredge during low tide heading north through the Intercostal Waterway and the Masonboro Inlet. “The crew of as many as seven can come from all parts of the country and travel with the ship when on duty.” http://luminanews.com/2015/09/army-corps-dredge-clears-sand-from-carolina-beach-inlet/. Even though the Murden has propellers which can be rotated, raised or lowered, steering the dredge vessel can still be challenging. The Army Corps of Engineers are on a mission and that mission is to make navigation throughout the waterways safe for commercial and recreational vessels.

The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers

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The U.S Army Corps of Engineers provides a variety of services which ensures our nation has a defense mechanism that enhances the capabilities of the military and the economy. Water resources at the beginning of the 20th century was a national problem because of neglected waterways, hydropower, and irrigation. In the west, there was a dire need for irrigation for agricultural. In the east, the construction of hydroelectric dams were needed to provide electricity. These dams effected the waterways by proliferating a rapid production of streams and channels which threatened navigation so inlet dredging became a necessary function provided by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers.

The federal government realized that power station infrastructures were necessary after severe flooding occurred along the Mississippi River. “Between 250 and 500 people were killed, over 16 million acres were flooded, and over 500,000 people were forced from their homes to refugee camps.” http://www.usace.army.mil/About/History/BriefHistoryoftheCorps/MultipurposeWaterwayD

evelopment.aspx. With that said, the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers performs many services related to the waterways around the United States.They ensure our nation’s military and economical infrastructures can promote cost-efficient electricity, irrigation, and navigational means for delivering goods and services around our nation and abroad.

Carolina Beach dredge material

The material from inlet dredging is removed from the waterway channels and placed at the north end of Carolina Beach at Freeman’s Park. The sand from the dredging builds up a beach where campers and motorist can drive their vehicles on after they have purchased a designated spot and permit. While there, they can cook on grill, fish, and enjoy campfires that offer the perfect camping experience.”Daytime visitors can still set up sun shades, day tents, and canopies. However, they must be removed before 11 p.m. each night.” http://www.wect.com/story/28576787/freeman-park-online-camping-reservations-now-available.  As with any beach area, there are rule and regulation that must be followed or your camping privileges can be revoked and charged a fine for not following these rules.

While inlet dredging promotes safe navigational means for recreational vessels, charter boats, and small fishing boats, individuals can benefit from the sand removed from the channels at Freeman Park Campfires are allowed, but the campers must bring their own fire pit container which should not exceed 3 ft. in diameter. Campers must also remove their fire pit before they leave the camping facility. As with any public entity, there are designated trash bins where any related trash and camping ash should be place to keep the park clean and free from debris.

What is dredging?

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As sand and silt washes downstream, sedimentation gradually fill channels and harbors. This material must be periodically removed by dredging. Dredging removes these sediments from the bottom of lakes, rivers, and harbors in waterways that are traveled by recreational boats, charter boats, and small boats or vessels bringing in bulk of goods. Dredging focuses more on the depth of channels to ensure safe passage of boats and ships. Since large vessels carry bulk cargo imported from other countries, dredging plays an important role in the nation’s economy. Dredging is also necessary because this prevents contaminants from spreading from one body of water to the next which can expose fish, wildlife, and people to certain pollutants that are frequently recognized within the industrial environments. Point sources such as sewer, overflows, and industrial discharge have an increased risk of contaminants if dredging was not done. “NOAA’s Office of Response and Restoration plays a major role in protecting and restoring marine natural resources when environmental damage occurs.” http://oceanservice.noaa.gov/facts/dredging.html. The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers can issue permits for the disposal of dredging material which provides oversight and authorization for the disposal of dredged material to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency.

Carolina Beach Inlet Safety

As Carolina Beach Inlets were becoming more difficult to navigate, safety was becoming an issue for many recreational vessels, charter boats, and small boats. The chances of becoming sand barged and damaging the keel of a vessel or charter boat was a fear that many were facing each time they traveled through the channels. The main disadvantages of becoming sand barged is crew members or passenger’s well-being and/or life were at risk also.
It was definitely good news when a budget amendment for the Carolina Beach Inlet was approved. The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers and New Hanover County will share a total of $206,900 for dredging. Participating municipalities will allocate the remaining balance of $80,000. Chairman Jonathan Barfield said, “It’s so vital that we make sure our inlet is open, number one for safety reasons, but also for the commercial fishermen in that part of our county, but also those recreational boaters as well.”http://www.dredgingtoday.com/2014/03/25/usa-carolina-beach-inlet-gets-dredging-money/.
Now the inlet can remain open and the issue of safety has been addressed. This will also ease the mind of commercial fishermen and recreational vessels who were finding it harder to navigate through the inlet because of shoaling.

Lack of Inlet Dredging

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Politicians and lobbyists need to be made aware of the consequences of not being able to maneuver safely along the channels. The lack of dredging could cause serious problems within the community of Carolina Beach and Pleasure Island if commercial and recreational vessels did not have the ability to safely maneuver through the inlet. If funds for inlet dredging were to dry up, it would put the whole community in an economic crisis because businesses and tourist depend on inlet dredging to be able travel from the inlet to the ocean.

If the keels of sailboats and vessels were to get trapped in sandbars, this could cost fishermen and tourists tens of thousands of dollars for towing and/or repairs for their boats and vessels. This could get very expensive if the inlet was not dredged which could affect businesses and tourists who rely on the inlet for safe travel within the channels. “A boat expert said it could cost up to $1,800 to remove the vessel from the sandbar.” http://www.krgv.com/news/local-news/Shallow-Waters-at-The-Fingers-Problematic-for-Boats/32243042. The dangers of getting trapped on a sandbar could destroy a boats and/or vessel. If the funds were not available for inlet dredging, Carolina Beach and Pleasant Island’s economy would suffer as vessels and recreational boats could get sand barged which could cause financial disaster for many.

Ways to Avoid a Shark Attack

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North Carolina coastlines have been on the news quite a bit since June 8th where shark have attacked swimmers and vacationers in waist deep water. This is unusual behavior for the sharks because humans are not their choice of food and most attacks are presumed to be mistaken identity for other prey. There are steps to follow which can help prevent shark attacks.

  1. Do not wear shiny or bright attire. These colors and shiny jewelry can mimic the shimmering scales of fish.
  2. Do not recline on your surf board. Reclining on a surf board appears like the torso of a seal underneath the water. An example of this was described in the news a few days ago when a competitor in South Africa was waiting to start his competition and was attacked.
  3. Do not go in the water if you have a fresh wound that is bleeding. Blood attracts sharks.
  4. Do not go in the water when you see a bunch of seagulls flying around. This is an indication that there are schools of fish which means a shark could be searching for his next meal.
  5. And last, but not least. If there are red flags up along the beach, be sure to ask a lifeguard why they are up and heed the warnings.