ORTLEY BEACH, N.J. (CBSNewYork) — Some New Jersey towns were scrambling Monday after they said storm preps did not hold over the weekend during a powerful nor’easter.
And while the storms this past weekend were over Monday, the tides were not.
Despite preparations, parts of the shore were washed away in Ortley Beach in Toms River Township, leaving an 8-foot drop, CBS2’s Meg Baker reported.
Toms River Township crews are still working to move sand into place to protect homes from rising tides.
“After Sandy everything is almost like a Band-Aid, it’s a temporary fix,” Ortley Beach resident Joan Delucia said. “A little sand, a little extra sand, a little higher sand but we lost a lot of beach in Sandy.”
President of the Ortley Beach Homeowners Association, Paul Jeffrey, said the area is one of the weakest on the New Jersey coast.
“Thank goodness we didn’t get the hurricane,” Jeffrey said. “This nor’easter they’ve been known to do this before it took out a fair portion of the dunes, if the hurricane had come behind it, we would have water all the way to the bay — there’s no doubt. We’ve had breaches the last couple of days. It would’ve gone straight through back to the bay just like with Sandy.”
Toms River Township Mayor Thomas F. Kelaher said the township is doing all that they can to replenish dunes to buffer homes, bringing in 300 truckloads of sand to add to dunes.
“Some people say you dump it, it goes out to sea. Part of the sand that went out to sea, though, did form a sandbar out here, and that helps break up the waves, so it’s not a total loss,” Kelaher said.
The mayor and others said the only long-term solution is a major beach replenishment project like the one on Long Beach Island. But that cannot be completed by the Army Corps of Engineers until easements are signed.
There are 17 holdouts for signing easements in Toms River Township.
“There’s still some folks who haven’t signed them. If last week wasn’t some reason for them to do it, they should come down here and see what we’re faced with here,” Kelaher said.
“Water did breach without any rain, so we’re just sitting ducks right now,” Delucia added.
The story is the same in Brick Township. On the Eighth Avenue beach in Normandy Beach, a 40-foot seawall was put in after Superstorm Sandy, and the waves are now crashing up against it.
“Obviously, we need 2(00) or 300 feet in front of this wall, and we need the wall covered for future protection, and hopefully, they’ll be voluntarily signing easements,” said Brick Township Mayor John G. Ducey.
According to the state of New Jersey, there are 366 easements for parcels still outstanding in New Jersey. Actual owner handouts amount to 239.
A total of 4,200 easements were needed at the beginning of the process after Sandy.