Up to 98% of Ortley Beach’s protective ‘sand mounds’ gone after latest wallop, report says

     Ortley Beach this morning, showing erosion to the edge of the boardwalk. (Photo: JSHN contributor Kevin Karlick)

    Ortley Beach this morning, showing erosion to the edge of the boardwalk. (Photo: JSHN contributor Kevin Karlick)

    The latest coastal wallop claimed nearly all of the protective “sand mounds” added to the oceanfront in the Ortley Beach section of Toms River. 

    Earlier this week, crews added two mounds separated by a valley in a temporary effort to hold back the three high tide cycles the National Weather Service had predicted for the weekend storm.

    After getting battered by significant waves and a surging sea since yesterday morning, the sand mounds kept the ocean from breaching inland, although the protective measure is now 98% gone, a Toms River Office of Emergency Management representative told WNBC’s Brian Thompson

    The cost of the measure was not immediately known. 

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    In October, Township Administrator Paul Shives said the municipality spent $800,000 on its temporary sand mounds prior to Hurricane Joaquin. 

    That included employee overtime and payment for about 300 truckloads of sand that were placed on the beach to hold back the surging tides. 

    According to the Riverside Signal, the township tapped a $1 million line of credit from the New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection to pay for the sand.

    Council members and residents have called on the state and the Army Corps of Engineers to move quickly toward obtaining easements necessary for a beach replenishment project.

    Township officials previously said the cost and effort could have been avoided had the easements from beachfront property owners been in place, according to the Riverside Signal report. 

    Multiple easements remained unsigned in Toms River. 

    In October, Councilwoman Maria Maruca said it would be “nerve-racking” to live through winter with no dunes. Officials held a dune grass planting in November in an effort to create permanent protection from the ocean. 

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