‘No major erosion’ on N.J. beaches

Hurricane Irene took a chunk out of New Jersey’s beaches, but officials say they will be ready to host Labor Day weekend crowds.

A state Department of Environmental Protection representative said the state’s 127-mile coastline actually came through the hurricane in good shape. Past coastal storms inflicted far worse damage.

Beach-replenishment and dune projects may have helped to prevent significant beach erosion from the storm, said Larry Ragonese, DEP spokesman.

“In general, all the way down from the Wildwoods up past Long Beach Island, it looks like we lost a bit of sand in some places but no major erosion problems,” Ragonese said.

The worst erosion occurred on Long Beach Island where waves scoured 15- to 18-foot cliffs in some spots.

The island averaged a loss of 4 to 5 feet of height and 150 feet of width on its beaches.

But authorities say there will still be plenty of room for vacationers on Labor Day weekend.

Bulldozers were on the job Monday, pushing sand around in many spots.

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