STUMPY POINT, NC – About 2,500 people are stranded on Hatteras Island because Hurricane Irene tore up parts of NC 12.
Only emergency crews are being shuttled to and from the island by ferries at Stumpy Point. A ferry ride to Rodanthe is about one hour and 45 minutes.
Meantime, many residents are without power and bags of ice are a hot commodity.
"I think the conditions on the ground are worse than they were in hurricane Isabel and we're geared up to as long as it takes," said Jed Dixon with the North Carolina Department of Transportation. "There's a lot of infrastructure that's got to be put back in place,” he added.
Dixon says folks have been asking for a ride on the ferry.
"The residents are anxious to get back home and I understand their frustration, but we're working tirelessly so that it's safe and so that we don’t strain the power grid when they get over there with his big influx of people coming to the island."
Transportation officials aren’t saying when residents can take the ferries but they say crews are working around the clock to make it happen.