(a)  The primary causes of the hazards peculiar to the Atlantic shoreline are the constant forces exerted by waves, winds, and currents upon the unstable sands that form the shore.  During storms, these forces are intensified and can cause significant changes in the bordering landforms and to structures located on them.  Ocean hazard area property is in the ownership of a large number of private individuals as well as several public agencies and is used by a vast number of visitors to the coast.  Ocean hazard areas are critical, therefore, because of both the severity of the hazards and the intensity of interest in the areas.

(b)  The location and form of the various hazard area landforms, in particular the beaches, dunes, and inlets, are in a permanent state of flux, responding to meteorologically induced changes in the wave climate.  For this reason, the appropriate location of structures on and near these landforms must be reviewed carefully in order to avoid their loss or damage.  As a whole, the same flexible nature of these landforms which presents hazards to development situated immediately on them offers protection to the land, water, and structures located landward of them.  The value of each landform lies in the particular role it plays in affording protection to life and property.  (The role of each landform is described in detail in Technical Appendix 2 in terms of the physical processes most important to each.)  Overall, however, the energy dissipation and sand storage capacities of the landforms are most essential for the maintenance of the landforms' protective function.


History Note:        Authority G.S. 113A‑107(a); 113A‑107(b); 113A‑113(b)(6a); 113A‑113(b)(6b); 113A‑113(b)(6d);


Eff. September 9, 1977;

Amended Eff. October 1, 1992.