BUXTON, N.C. (WAVY) – Hurricane Arthur is long gone, but its impact is still being felt by businesses on Hatteras Island. The storm blew in and blew away 4th of July profits.
“It has been a complete loss and this is money that you can never get back,“ said Carol White Dillon, owner of the Outer Banks Motel.
The property damage done by the July 4th hurricane might have been minimal, but the same can’t be said for the damage done to Hatteras Island businesses.
“When we don’t make money when we are supposed to make money and especially on a holiday like the 4th of July, it is devastating,“ Dillon added.
Dillon like other business owners can’t believe a storm hit so early in the season.
“Well, it is the earliest I ever remember and I am an old woman,“ she laughed.
What wasn’t so funny was having almost a week’s worth of cancellations. She even had cancellations for this week. That’s important cash right out of her pocket.
“We make our money in the summertime,” Dillon said. “During the off-months, we are painting and spring cleaning. The money is all going out the door. This is the time when we recoup and make profit.“
“This is when we get caught up from the winter hangover,” David Dawson added. “This is when we really start paying our bills and it (Arthur) just prolongs the start of our season.“
Dawson is the owner of the Cape Hatteras Motel. He says he lost almost $10,000 a day last week. He believes all the other business owners lost just as much.
“We’ve got about six to eight good strong weeks and to take off the front end of that is scary,” Dawson said. “We could have other storms.“
Dawson believes any storm can hurt business, not just the one on the busiest weekend of the year.
“It is the residual effect, the perception that maybe we’ve gotten battered,” Dawson added. “It is real important to get the word out that much of the island was very fortunate to be unscathed and the beaches are open and everything is fine.“
The amount of revenue lost on all of Hatteras Island is still being tallied.