Wilmington, NC – It's a sunny day at Oak Island's Yaupon Pier. Fishermen stand along the railings every ten feet and watch their lines disappear into the water. Steven Ackermann and his nine-year-old son Austin watch their three poles carefully when Austin sees his pole bend.
The Ackermanns come to Oak Island from Buford, Georgia every summer. The older Ackermann says they're happy to be fishing, but also a little disappointed this year.
Wilmington, NC – A new rule filed Monday bans gillnet fishing off South Carolina's coast during right whale calving season.
NOAA Fisheries Service says there is now a permanent ban on gillnetting from mid-November to mid-April. That's when right whales calve off the southeastern U-S coast. NOAA Fisheries Biologist Barb Zoodsma says the gillnet restriction now includes waters within 35 nautical miles off the South Carolina coast.
Wilmington, NC – Faced with a dangerously low inventory, the Wilmington Area American Red Cross is urging individuals to donate blood. Barry Hooker, the district manager of donor recruitment for the Wilmington area, says the area usually collects between 175 and 200 units of blood a day. Hooker says he would need to collect at least 1,400 units a day to keep up with the demand. He also says with so many people traveling during the summer, the Red Cross can't depend on regular donors.
Wilmington, NC – The SABLE 1 Helicopter is patrolling area streets with an eagle's eye view. Law enforcement love the new crime fighting tool while residents below are less than keen on hearing the chopper flying around at night. WHQR's Catherine Welch has more.
Wilmington, NC – Swimmers and sunbathers at Sunset Beach won't be seeing billboards in the water any time soon.
The town council has amended its advertising ordinance to ban inflatable billboards from local sands and surf. Planning board chairman Al Siebert says the council took preemptive action after learning from planning staff that a new generation of beachside billboards might be in the works.
Wilmington, NC – A Brunswick County non-profit is working to keep area seniors cool this summer.
Jim Russell is manager of Brunswick Senior Resources. He says this summer his organization will purchase at least 90 window fans for local senior citizens. Russell says a limited number of air conditioners might be available for some seniors with severe medical problems.
Wilmington, NC – Brunswick County Superintendent Katie McGee says she is shocked and disheartened that a cross-country coach married a 16-year-old student.
In a released statement McGee says both the school and law enforcement investigated rumors about the relationship between 40-year-old Brenton Wuchae and student Windy Hager. But because they could not prove that anything was going on charges were never filed and Wuchae was not fired.
Wilmington, NC – South Carolina fire officials are calling Monday night's fire in a sofa warehouse in Charleston the deadliest for firefighters in the state's history.
The fire tore through the Sofa Super Store and warehouse killing nine firefighters.
Jim Bowie is Executive Director of the South Carolina Firefighters Association and used to be a firefighter in Charleston. Bowie says teams from across the state are mobilizing to help the Charleston fire department and families of the dead.
Wilmington, NC – The Neuse River Foundation begins a 51-hour vigil in Raleigh Tuesday for legislation controlling hog farm pollution.
Larry Baldwin is Riverkeeper for the Neuse River Foundation. He says he hopes the vigil will bring attention to legislation raising sanitation standards at hog farms. Baldwin says farmers claim that cleaner technology is prohibitively expensive but believes you can't put a price on clean water.
Wilmington, NC – Columbus County residents who use the bus to get to Wilmington: WAVE Transit wants to know how to serve you better.
WAVE Transit is looking to improve rider-ship on its Columbus County Connector bus service. A survey found the route has roughly 100 users a month, split between commuters and people trying to get to Wilmington's health services and shopping.