Coast Guard lifts Bonner Bridge boat restrictions

DARE COUNTY, N.C. (WAVY) — The Coast Guard has lifted restrictions it placed on boaters in the Oregon Inlet in late March.

Initially, boats were not allowed to travel under the Bonner Bridge at all. Coast Guard officials said the inlet was too shallow in that area and were afraid boats would hit and damage the bridge. The decision outraged fishermen, who were in the last days of the lucrative bluefin tuna season.

On Thursday, the Coast Guard announced the restrictions had been lifted after the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers did some dredging in the channel. That channel is unmarked, so the Coast Guard encourages boaters to look at the latest hydrographic survey info.

Hydrographic Map: Oregon Inlet – east of bridge

Hydrographic Map: Oregon Inlet – west of bridge

The Coast Guard says the navigational aids in the Oregon Inlet are not charted, and they don’t always mark the best path because the shoals on the inlet floor are constantly moving. To see the latest positions of the navigational aids, click here.

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