The Oregon Inlet Task Force approved a request at its February meeting for the county-managed-dredge Miss Katie to return to Hatteras Inlet’s Connector Channel in mid-March to perform an additional dredging project, contingent upon good weather and channel conditions.
Miss Katie recently completed a 10-day dredging event in the Connector Channel on February 5, with 14,172 cubic yards of material removed and dumped off the Ocracoke nearshore disposal site.
The 156-foot dredge, christened on October 13 at a ceremony in Wanchese, had already been working in Oregon Inlet since the fall of 2022, but the late January dredging event was the first time that she worked in the channels of Hatteras Inlet.
The Oregon Inlet Task Force has been charged by Dare County to manage the dredge, including its operation schedule and project monitoring, and as a proactive measure, the Dare County Waterways Commission voted at their February meeting to request a second visit by the end of March.
Special permission is needed for every Hatteras Inlet dredging event outside of the permitted dredging window of October 1 through March 31, hence the request to have Miss Katie return before the window closes for the summer season.
“The Dare County Task Force and EJE [Dredging Service] got the dredge down here [in January] like they said they would, and from everything I’ve heard from boats going in and out of the Connector Channel, they did an excellent job,” said Chairman Steve “Creature” Coulter at the Feb. 13 Waterways Commission meeting.
“We took the first step in getting the Miss Katie down here, and hopefully we’ll get two or three more steps [accomplished] in the future to keep working on making Dare County a place where everyone can come and bring their boats, and travel in and out of the inlet safely.”