Storm brings beach erosion, flooding at Jersey Shore

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The beach is all, but gone at Third Avenue in North Wildwood, but locals breathed a sigh of relief keeping in mind things could be worse. (WPVI)

The beach is all, but gone at Third Avenue in North Wildwood, but locals breathed a sigh of relief keeping in mind things could be worse.

"Coupled with this - the hurricane - everybody would have been evacuated. It would have been really bad," said Tony Chrietzberg of Wildwood Crest.

North Wildwood officials said replenishment of the dune at the beach could start later this week, but the rest of it will take some time and planning.

Casey's on Third, a local bar stayed open through the storm, even when the water lapped at the front door Saturday afternoon.

"It was all the way up to the doorstep. When the cars go by, the wakes came in. Some water did come in a little, but nothing like Hurricane Sandy," said Kevin Casey.

Flooding forced police to close the Black Horse Pike in part of West Atlantic City. The Black Horse Pike was also closed in Pleasantville at Franklin Boulevard.

The mayor of Stone Harbor said the beach erosion likely goes all the way down to the Point, though they're still assessing the damage.

While the beaches do protect the properties, she said it will take millions of dollars to fix. The federal government, state and local taxpayers will be the source of those funds.

"We had already been talking with the Corps of Engineers and the DEP about doing a replenishment project," said Mayor Suzanne Walters. "We hadn't thought we were going to have to do it this soon."

At the 11th Street beach, the erosion was severe. People who live nearby, including a few nuns from the Villa Maria Retreat House, came to check out the damage.

"We didn't have flooding here around the building this time. This all washed out with Sandy," said Sister James Dolores. "But this time because of the hurricane not hitting we were OK with that."

Winds battered the Ocean City Boardwalk Saturday forcing people to bundle up, and at times, walk backwards.

In the ocean, those same gusts whipped sand and rattled signs as aggressive waves hugged the pole.

Beach erosion is already a concern. After several days of storms, the sand has formed a shelf.

On West Avenue, no wake zone warnings now apply.

"It's pretty much crazy, people just keep flying down the street, and don't stop," said Brittany Rush.

Starting Thursday, Wallace's Hardware saw a frenzy of panicked people.

"We sold out of sandbags like three days ago so they were panicking a little bit, but today ... the bay side's gotten hit pretty bad," said Dawn Wallace.

The Ocean City Fire Department was prepared with specially equipped flood vehicles and water rescue equipment.

PHOTOS: Flooding in Ocean City, New Jersey

The deputy chief said he feels like they got a break with the storm.

"We had the high tides come in, and it did right about what we expected," said Chief Deputy Jim Smith. "We got lucky it didn't go into some of the housing authorities we have."

All weekend, flooding has plagued pretty much every corner of Jersey shore.

Roads became impassable from Absecon to Atlantic City and Wildwood.

In Wildwood, the relentless rainfall may have caused concrete and bricks to fall 20 feet from a senior home.
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