Erosion issues following blizzard on LI

December 30, 2010 2:14:04 PM PST
Another issue to emerge from the blizzard is beach erosion.

It is a major problem on the eastern end of Long Island, especially after storms.

This time it's so bad, officials are worried about homes and buildings collapsing.

The storm may be long gone but at the tip of Long Island it left a path of destruction in its wake.

Hotels can be seen teetering over the edge, their foundations exposed, and cesspools shattered by the nor'easter's relentless waves.

"You look at what's happening here, I mean, we're getting ravaged," Steve Kalimnios said.

For three decades, Steve Kalimnios has owned Montauk's largest hotel, the Royal Atlantic, and he's never seen anything like it.

A few miles away, Montauk's north shore didn't fare much better.

When waves breached its bulkhead, one house nearly slid into the Block Island Sound.

"I was under the house yesterday and I was looking up through the first floor and saw a bed and a night table and a picture on the wall," said Gregory Donohue, a Montauk resident.

Contractors have worked around the clock to save it.

But, there may be no saving businesses on the beach unless the town of East Hampton changes its dune management laws.

Kalimnios wants to install a heavy metal foundation under the beach to protect his property, but town law won't allow it.

"We can only bring in sand. And, as you can see when the storms come they only take the sand away. So it's like taking a teaspoon of sugar and throwing it into the ocean, no matter how much sand you put its going to keep on washing away," Kalimnios said.

He hopes to convince legislators to change the law and protect a vital tourism economy, before it washes away.

"Previous administrations have totally closed their eyes and tried to bury their heads in the sand with the situation, and as you can see, there's no more sand left for anyone to bury their heads," Kalimnios said.

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