A tidal pool that stretches for five blocks and grows to six feet in depth at high tide has become too large for Lavallette borough officials to manage, spurring Mayor Walter LaCicero to seek assistance from the federal government.
The tidal pools appeared after sand began spreading to the southern end of Lavallette following the emergency beach replenishment project that was completed earlier this summer in neighboring Ortley Beach. The borough received a single-day permit from the state Department of Environmental Protection to use a front loader to fill in the tidal pool earlier this month, but the pool reappeared longer and deeper than before afterward.
“I’ve requested help from our representative in Congress, Tom MacArthur,” said LaCicero on Tuesday afternoon, as beachgoers in the southern portion of the town were seen traversing the tidal pool to get to and from the guarded beach. “We need bulldozers to move the sand and fill it in. There are three in Mantoloking and there are some at the Joint Base.”
LaCicero was turning to the federal government for help since the beach replenishment project is federally-funded and contracted. Mantoloking received three surplus bulldozers from the U.S. Army after Superstorm Sandy that can be seen parked at the Herbert Street beachfront.
LaCicero said the state has now granted Lavallette a permanent emergency permit to move sand to fill in the pool, but resources remain an issue.
“My guys can do it, but we just need the equipment,” said LaCicero.
In the mean time, portions of the tidal pool are blocked off by ropes and red flags.