North Carolina

This Outer Banks photo is fake, but there was good reason people thought it was real

A screenshot of a photo illustration posted by Outer Banks photographer Alex Lex.
A screenshot of a photo illustration posted by Outer Banks photographer Alex Lex. FACEBOOK

A lot of people have fallen for images an Outer Banks photographer has posted on social media in recent years.

Alex Lex is known locally for posting photo illustrations that show real scenes from North Carolina’s barrier islands but that include unrealistic elements.

But a recent Facebook post might have turned the heads of even those who are familiar with Lex’s handiwork.

The photo posted Sunday showed cars nearly submerged in water in front of a Cape Hatteras National Seashore sign, with a caption that read: “Heavy rain cause major flooding around Outer Banks.”

The post was shared more than 12,000 times and drew hundreds of comments by Wednesday. Many remarked that they had just been there, and many tagged others indicating they were at the popular vacation destination.

Read Next

But, as the National Weather Service’s Newport/Morehead office pointed out, the image in the post was fake.

The office noted in a tweet that the scene used for the post was taken from when Hurricane Harvey hit Texas in 2017.

The image was perhaps more believable than others before, and for good reason. On the same day it posted, the National Weather Service issued a flash flood warning that canvassed Kill Devil Hills, Kitty Hawk, Nags Head and Manteo.

Shortly afterward, outstanding photos of real flooding on the Outer Banks began to hit social media.

Some of the most popular photo illustrations posted by Alex Lex have been of extreme waves crashing into Outer Banks piers.

Related stories from Raleigh News & Observer