Sea Isle City —
In Sea Isle City, the storm caused extensive flooding in areas north of JFK Boulevard and isolated pockets to the south, including Landis and Central avenues. Storm surges also ripped sand from Sea Isle’s beaches. A barge, moored in Townsends Inlet, slammed into the Townsends Inlet Bridge on Nov. 12, forcing county officials to close the bridge.
Sea Isle City Business Administrator George Savastano said Sea Isle City lost 700,000 cubic yards of beach and dunes. According to preliminary damage assessments, Sea Isle City suffered $15 million in damages, which includes $13 million in sand damage.
Savastano said the nor’easter was the worst storm since one in December 1992.
“It wasn’t as bad as the December of 1992 storm but it was very similar in that you had a number of successive high tide cycles with the storm,” Savastano said. “With five high tide cycles in a row with storm conditions it just chopped away at that beach.”
Savastano said residents were alerted through the city’s Reverse 911 automated emergency notification system. He said though residents knew what to expect with flooding during high tides, most of the damage the city suffered was on the beach.
Sea Isle City was slated for a $5 million beach replenishment for early 2010, which would pump 700,000 cubic yards of sand. Savastano said with the storm and a visit by Federal Emergency Management Agency officials this week to assess the damages, the city could receive additional beach replenishment funding.
The project could see as much at $7 million for more sand for the beaches and dunes.
“The fortunate thing for us is we still have dunes along a length of island where we’re vulnerable but they’re very depleted. The beach fill we did this past summer held up well,” Savastano said.