Local News

Sandbag sites being evaluated on coast

Posted July 25, 2008

— The Division of Coastal Management announced on Friday it is finalizing a list of high-priority sandbag sites.

The list also ranks sandbag sites that need to be cleaned up, which will have some coastal homeowners being notified to remove their protective sandbags.

Coastal Management field representative John Cece has been documenting thousands of sandbags protecting property on the coast.

“It’s challenging. … We have 110 sites,” Cece said.

Many sandbag sites are in Dare County, where years of hurricanes have pummeled the shore and homeowners have been using sandbags to try to keep the sea at bay.

Cece said the oldest sandbags he saw were from 1992. Sandbags were supposed to be temporary, lasting two to five years at most. The state now plans to send letters telling some homeowners to remove the bags.

“I don't think that they're going to be received well, and I think the end result is yet to be seen on that,” Ocean Isle Beach Mayor Debbie Smith said.

The state Division of Coastal Management has made a map and database and is determining the sandbag sites that need to be cleaned up first.

“We have a number of bags that have fallen off the authorized alignment. They're out here on the beach, tumbling on the beach; some of the bags are torn,” Cece said.

Smith said she doesn’t think anyone wants a “wall blocking our beaches,” but some reasonable measures need to exist to protect the shoreline.

“If the regulations authorized development, we're required to issue citizens the permit, so people can still legally obtain permits for sandbags,” Cece said.

Homeowners will have 30 days to comply. Once the initial notices are mailed out, the state will start sending notices to the rest of the homeowner who are in violation.


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  • Citizens Arrayest Jul 25, 2008

    oh i agree, the people that CHOSE to build there were taking a risk now its time to get the bags out-a-there.

  • shutterbug Jul 25, 2008

    The sand on those islands have been migrating for 150,000 years. We are not going to stop it. All the sand bags are doing is transferring the erosion further down the beach to someone else.

    Retire science teacher comment.

  • whatelseisnew Jul 25, 2008

    The only flip side I see here, is development should not have been allowed in the first place.

  • jlh4jdj Jul 25, 2008

    I was about to say why is this my problem then I thought about it me and the rest of the average tax paying people will pay somehow. So just by that I'm mad about it and don't even know yet why.

  • Citizens Arrayest Jul 25, 2008

    The western point of emerald isle and northern point at topsail, if you remove the bags you might as well go ahead a bulldoze the houses while your at it.

  • geosol Jul 25, 2008

    Don't worry, the politicians who cater to the well-to-do will find a way to kill the common-sense rules on coastal development. They always do and you and i get to pay for it. Yay!!!

  • SEAIRESCUE Jul 25, 2008

    GREAT...I am tired of paying for those sand bags for Mr. BIG's beach-front hooch. Besides, they threaten the split-tailed, double breasted, golden mattress thrasher's mating habitat along the coastal area marshes.