NCDOT offers Internet service on Ocracoke ferries

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Associated Press

Posted on September 19, 2013 at 4:05 PM

MANNS HARBOR, N.C. (AP) — There's good news for people who can't tweet or update their status during the long ferry ride between the mainland and Ocracoke Island.

The N.C. Department of Transportation announced Thursday that it's offering free Internet service on vessels that make the runs across Pamlico Sound.

A department news release said WiFi routers have been installed on five vessels that take passengers to Ocracoke from Cedar Island and Swan Quarter. A sixth vessel undergoing maintenance will be outfitted with WiFi when it returns to service.

The pilot program marks the first time DOT has offered WiFi service for ferry riders. DOT is paying U.S. Cellular $5,472 a year for the service, and Ferry Division Deputy Director Jed Dixon said if it works out, DOT will look for sponsors to expand it.

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