MOREHEAD CITY, CARTERET COUNTY - Carteret Community College's library building has been closed for repairs due to the tornado in late November.
According to the school, the Michael J. Smith building is closed as a precaution after a building inspector and other officials examined the walls and windows on the south side of the building Wednesday afternoon.
"We discovered what may be structural damage on the wall facing Bogue Sound," said Dr. Kerry Youngblood, president of Carteret Community College. "At this time, both the engineer and the building inspector agree that the building should not be inhabited until we can ensure we do not have larger issues. Our primary concern is safety. We are continuing to make accommodations for students and staff, and we will do so as long as necessary."
The EF2 tornado came ashore in Atlantic Beach on the night of Nov. 26 and severely damaged Ocean Sands Condominiums on West Fort Macon Road, before causing significant damage to some buildings at Carteret Community College, according to the National Weather Service. The tornado later caused minor damage at Carteret General Hospital.
Several injuries were reported, but there were no fatalities, the NWS reported.
The Michael J. Smith building houses Carteret Community College's library, fine arts program, information technology section, and offices for the Crystal Coast Civic Center.
"We anticipate that there will be a more clear assessment of damages and possible remedies by as early as Saturday or as late as mid-week next week," said Dr. Youngblood.
In the meantime, library staff members are working at other locations, according to the school. Those who need to resolve library-related fees or flags can go to the college's Business Office in the McGee building on campus from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. weekdays beginning Thursday.
All library-related materials to be returned should be placed in the curbside book drop outside the library on College Circle.
"Our library staff is forwarding the main library telephone number and will be monitoring their main email address, so they will be accessible by phone and email," said Dr. Youngblood.
To contact the library, call 252-222-6213 email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Students needing computer support can go to the open computer lab in the McGee building in room 101.