Slow Labor Day for public safety officials


Labor Day Monday proved to be less taxing on local law enforcement and public safety officers than the previous two days of the Labor Day Weekend.

Just before Wrightsville Beach Ocean Rescue crews left the beach for the day around 7:30 p.m., Sept. 1, captain Jeremy Owens said lifeguards had only responded to a few rip current related rescues and a couple minor medical calls. Those rescues occurred at stand 13 at the south end, and stands 5,6 and 8 near the middle of the island.

Wrightsville Beach Fire Department Captain Matt Holland said fire crews only responded to one call all day, which was a traffic accident around noon on Causeway Drive near Mellow Mushroom. The incident involved a car and motorcycle and one patient was transferred to New Hanover Regional Medical Center with unspecified injuries.

Earlier that day troopers from North Carolina State Highway Patrol set up a license check for the west of the Salisbury Street Bridge for the westbound lane. Around 4:45 p.m. First Sergeant Pope said his troopers did not charge anyone with driving while impaired during that time period but issued 12 license-related citations during the hour and a half they were stationed there.

Wrightsville Beach park ranger Shannon Slocum said he wrote six citations throughout the day for alcohol or glass on the beach. Slocum said he did have to ask a few people to stay out of the north end bird sanctuary and also broke up a protest at Johnnie Mercer’s Pier. Slocum said the 10-15 people gathered were protesting hydraulic fracking and did not have a permit to do so. A beachgoer had called in to complain about the protest.

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