Oceanfront house near Rodanthe Pier collapses; beachgoers warned of large debris field

Debris from the collapsed house (center) has been steadily spreading to adjacent properties. Rodanthe Pier located at the top. [photo courtesy Brad Hanson]

Beachgoers along northern Hatteras Island are advised to watch out for debris on the sand and in the water, after an oceanfront house collapsed this morning south of Rodanthe Pier.

The vacation rental was located in the 24000 block of Ocean Drive in Rodanthe, an area of beach that has been especially prone to erosion for more than a decade.

The collapse happened sometime between Tuesday night and Wednesday morning, and was reported around 7 a.m., according to The Island Free Press.

[photo courtesy Brad Hanson]
A house in the 24000 block of Ocean Drive in Rodanthe collapsed on Feb. 9, 2022. [courtesy National Park Service]

“We are in communication with the owner, who will need to come up with a house removal plan, similar to (the process) of removing the debris of a grounded vessel,” said Michael Barber, Public Affairs Specialist for the Cape Hatteras National Seashore. “We will issue a special use permit for the removal, and we are working with the owner and the county to clear the debris.”

The five-bedroom, three-bathroom house known as “Paradise Hatteras Style” was at one point in a weekly vacation rental program.

Built in 1980, the property had an assessed value of $310,100 by the Dare County Tax Department, which included $83,300 for the structure and $226,800 for the land. The property owners are from Virginia Beach.

Comments on social media indicate it had been condemned and it was not occupied at the time of the collapse.

As of Wednesday afternoon, most of the structure had disintegrated, with just a small section of the top level of the home remaining intact and close to shore.

Debris was spotted off Waves and Salvo, as well as over seven miles away near ORV ramp 23, according to a Cape Hatteras National Seashore press release.

Debris washed up at Ramp 23 just hours after a house collapsed 7 miles to the north in Rodanthe on Feb. 9, 2022. [NPS photo]

Brad Hanson captured a sequence of photos taken on Sunday, Monday and Tuesday before the house collapsed:

The National Park Service is communicating with Dare County to coordinate the removal of the house and all related debris on the beach.

This is a developing story, stay with OBX Today for updates.

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Sam Walker was news director for OBXToday.com, Beach 104, 99.1 The Sound, Big 94.5 WCMS and Z 92.3 from August 2011 to March 2022.