RESEARCH AND TEACHING OPPORTUNITIES FROM STORMS ALONG THE NEW JERSEY COAST
The recent damage from Hurricane Sandy was much harder for students to study at least on the ocean side where there was so much damage, with open gas and water mains, no electricity and deep pot holes in places that a police state was enforced for at least two months until roads could be dug out and gas and water mains repaired. Aerial photos were better for studying coastal processes since most were destroyed as the barrier islands were “repaired.” However on the bay and estuary side, the depth of the surge could be studied using various methods including “bathtub rings” of leaves and debris. Newspaper interviews of homeowners could also be used as people were able to precisely indicate how deep the water was in their homes. Individual interviews of homeowners had to be done with tact and compassion due to their extensive losses, but the timing of the surge could be determined from these interviews as well. The timing and depth was critical information in determining when the initial surge came in, and whether the breaching of the Mantoloking barrier gave them a second surge, and how deep the water was with that surge.