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Contact: Wouter Ketel, 252-728-2250 ext. 3005
Harkers Island, N.C. -- The National Park Service (NPS) announced today that "Open House" tours of the Cape Lookout Lighthouse have been suspended for public safety reasons. Superintendent Russel J. Wilson said that an engineer's inspection conducted this month revealed significant deterioration to the integrity of the tower's circular stairway.
"We had hoped to be able to conduct a limited schedule of tours while we worked to get the lighthouse tower open to the public on a regular basis," Wilson said, "It is clear from the engineer's report though, that to ensure public safety, we need to suspend tours until necessary structural upgrades to the lighthouse are completed."
Wilson said that the work to be completed this summer will be a significant step towards opening the lighthouse to regular public access. The work will include a comprehensive engineering evaluation, and design work for the modifications that are necessary to the lighthouse to ensure public safety.
During the summer season, the Cape Lookout Light Station Visitor Center and Keepers' Quarters Museum will continue to be open to the public, and the park will continue to offer a range of educational programs about the historic and natural resources of the park. For more information on tours and programs throughout the summer, call the park at 252-728-2250 extension 3001 or visit the park's web site at http://www.nps.gov/calo/.