Officials warn swimmers to be cautious visiting new sandbar in Cape Hatteras

Photo courtesy Chad Koczera, @chadonka/Instagram

CAPE POINT, N.C. (WAVY) — The National Park Service and Dare County officials are warning people to be careful when visiting the sandbar that has formed off the Cape Hatteras National Seashore.

According to the National Park Service, the sandbar formed in the Cape Point area over the last two to three months, drawing in visitors and leading to a significant number of recent water rescues by the Hatteras Island Rescue Squad.

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Officials say the Cape Point area is constantly changing through erosion and sand accretion, and currents between Cape Point and offshore sandbars can be very strong, so park officials don’t recommend that visitors swim or wade in these areas.

Instead, officials recommend swimming at beaches with lifeguards like Coquina Beach, Hatteras Lighthouse Beach and the Ocracoke Day Use Area Beach.

For those who would like to visit the new sandbar, Cape Hatteras National Seashore Superintendent David Hallac states that, “traveling to the sandbar is best accomplished by experienced kayakers or paddle boarders that are using appropriate flotation and mindful of the tides and strong currents in the area.”