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Damage control

By |  June 14, 2013

Just about every summer, my wife and I spend time at the Jersey Shore. She grew up in Eastern Pennsylvania, and my first job out of college was in Philadelphia, so the shore is a familiar, happy spot for us both. We watched the news with interest last fall when Hurricane Sandy swept through the area, causing devastation all along the East Coast. Damage estimates are reportedly about $50 billion, and much of that money is finding its way to the aggregates industry, as building materials have been needed for homes, businesses, infrastructure and even the repair and future prevention of beach erosion.

This spring, 100 haul trucks rolled through Fort Lauderdale, Fla., each day in a $1.5-million beach-restoration project. The Sun Sentinel reports that the material was supplied by Eastman Aggregate Enterprises and hauled from a site west of Lake Okeechobee. More than 20,000 cu. yd. of sand was used. And even larger beach-restoration projects are being reported along the coast. More recently, tornadoes in Oklahoma devastated the town of Moore, and caused $2 billion of damage that will create a need for building materials in the area.

And, in May, the collapse of part of the Interstate 5 bridge over the Skagit River in Washington state was another wake-up call that America’s infrastructure is aging. According to reports, the bridge was not technically classified as structurally deficient, but the Federal Highway Administration ruled it functionally obsolete, a category suggesting the design is outdated.

Outgoing Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood recently remarked that he expects President Obama to make a “big” announcement this fall about transportation funding. Owing to recent natural disasters and an outdated infrastructure, there’s certainly work to be done.

On a lighter note

Atlantic City, N.J., prepared for the World Championship of Sand Sculpting when the city received shipment of more than 1.2-million lbs. of fine-grade sand.

The Beachcomber reports that the sand came from Tuckahoe Sand & Gravel, Tuckahoe, N.J. The high-quality sand is used for the competition, because it is very fine and has a natural ability to stick together. Seven haul trucks crossed the Atlantic City Boardwalk to deliver 28 loads of the competition-grade sand to the beach.

I look forward to returning to the Jersey Shore. It’s open again for business and pleasure.

About the Author:

Darren Constantino is an editor of Pit & Quarry magazine. He can be reached at dconstantino@northcoastmedia.net.

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