Navigation alert: New island appears off North Carolina coast

Jul 5, 2017 by Jordanna Sheermohamed

By Jordanna Sheermohamed

The recent geological phenomena off the U.S. East Coast, the appearance of a large sand island known as “Shelly Island,” is testament to the power of our constantly evolving Earth. Located just off the tip of Cape Hatteras, on the Outer Banks of North Carolina, this newest addition is a result of its strategic location between converging Atlantic Ocean current systems. The cold and dense polar waters shift southward to meet the northward traveling warmer and lighter Gulf Stream waters in and around the Mid-Atlantic Coast. The continental shelf also narrows around the Mid-Atlantic, with the steep drop-off less than 100 miles from the coastline. Geographically, Cape Hatteras sticks out like a thumb in the middle of this turbulent location, often subject to the tumultuous churning of the sand and sediments.

Strongest currents are indicated by red, while weakest currents are in blue. The Gulf Stream current can easily be seen along the southeast waters, running parallel to the coast, and branching eastward towards Europe around the Mid-Atlantic. GRAPHIC/WEATHER FORECAST SOLUTIONS


About Jordanna Sheermohamed

Jordanna Sheermohamed is president and lead meteorologist of Weather Forecast Solutions, a private weather-forecasting company ( Comments are welcome at

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