SEA BRIGHT, N.J. (CBSNewYork) — There’s concern in Sea Bright that today’s storm could make a dangerous sinkhole situation even worse.
About a dozen sinkholes opened up on a beach this weekend.
Heavy rain like Wednesday’s caused the sinkholes.
It’s a strange phenomena — a dozen or so sinkholes, like deep rabbit holes about 2-to-3 feet wide, appeared on the beach at the north end of Sea Bright last weekend. Some were so deep, if you stepped in it you’d be in over your head, reported CBS2’s Meg Baker.
“Someone could fall in, never come out,” said business owner Kyle Hopfensperger.
Signs saying “danger” and “keep out” are posted near the new sea wall as you approach Sandy Hook.
Local resident Danny Ciambrone shot video of the scene. He went down to the beach to check out the waves when he almost found himself in a 6-foot sinkhole.
“I just saw the sand had giant holes and there wasn’t just one; there were 10,” Ciambrone said. “A lot of people walk their dogs up and down. You see the caution signs, but you don’t really know that it’s a real thing.
He said he saw similar sinkholes after Superstorm Sandy back in 2012.
“We believe the sinkholes were caused due to the construction of the sea wall project. The settling of the rocks around there, the sand is supposed to kind of find its way between those and with heavy rains that we experienced last week, that’s kind of the issue we’re dealing with,” Sea Bright Office of Emergency Management coordinator Dan Chernavsky said.
Some remediation took place on Monday and Tuesday, but some smaller holes were still visible on Wednesday.
“DEP’s recommendation to mitigate that, our public works and fire department came down and they dumped about 20,000 gallons of water on Monday and Tuesday into those effected areas to kind of let them all settle in,” Chernaksvy said.
He says holes are bound to form again as sand continues to be pushed down between the rocks.
If you come across more sinkholes, please alert local officials.
The north end of the beach in Sea Bright remains closed as a precaution. As far as Wednesday’s storm goes, officials say they are not too worried, adding the wind and tides are in their favor. The worst part may be high winds, so residents are advised to lock down any lawn furniture and umbrellas that they may have outside.