REALLY? NOW??

Fido gets one of his most pressing needs tended to on East Front Street in Red Bank during a Hurricane Sandy downpour Monday afternoon. (Click to enlarge)

SHREWSBURY: WIRES DOWN ON SYCAMORE

Emergency workers closed a stretch of Sycamore Avenue in Shrewsbury around 2 p.m. Monday after a tree limb took down some wires. An auto accident apparently occurred nearby, with a mistaken initial report of an entrapment, though it was not immediately clear if the two incidents were related, police Chief Lou Ferraro told redbankgreen.  (Click to enlarge)

RED BANK? TRY GRAY BANK

Yestercades owner Ken Kalada shared this shot of Marine Park, Red Bank. (Photo by Ken Kalada. Click to enlarge)

redbankgreen readers Ken Kalada and Deb Smith sent us these storm shots taken early Monday.

Have you got one you’d like to share? Feel free to email it to us, full-sized, with info about when and where it was taken, and who if anyone should be credited.

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DOWNTOWN SEA BRIGHT UNDERWATER

redbankgreen photographer Peter Lindner snapped this shot on Ocean Avenue in Sea Bright at about 10:30 a.m.

Water was at mid-thigh, Lindner reports. Wind is howling there, too. Still, a few sightseers were out. (Photo by Peter Lindner. Click to enlarge)

SEA BRIGHT: OCEAN VIEW

Wish you were there? Sea Bright beach, around 10:30 Monday morning. (Video by Peter Lindner. Click to enlarge)

RUMSON-SEA BRIGHT: FAST-MOVING RIVER

A view of the fast incoming tide on the Shrewsbury River between Rumson and Sea Bright, as seen from Lincoln Avenue in Rumson at about 9 a.m. Monday. Photographer Peter Lindner says the West Park section of Rumson, which was ordered evacuated, has about a foot of water in many places. (Video by Peter Lindner. Click to enlarge)

RUMSON ORDERS EVACUATION

There was barely an unused square foot of ground at the Oceanic Marina Sunday afternoon, as all vessels were pulled from the water in advance of the storm. (Click to enlarge)

Though a mandatory evacuation order was in effect as of 4 p.m. Sunday, redbankgreen saw lots of lights and televisions glowing after 8 p.m. in homes along the streets that Rumson authorities warned are in danger of severe flooding as a result of expected storm surges.

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SEA BRIGHT SHUTS DOWN

A motorist stopped at a sign reading “Turn Around Now” at the foot of the Rumson-Sea Bright Bridge around 8:30 p.m. Sunday (Click to enlarge)

With a mandatory evacuation order in effect and a roaring storm expected to put the town “under water,” in the words of Mayor Dina Long, Sea Bright shut itself to the outside world Sunday evening, barring traffic across the two bridges that provide access. From the south, Ocean Avenue was reported to be flooded in Monmouth Beach as a result of ocean water overtopping the sea wall.

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RED BANK BEFORE THE STORM

The folks at Sugarush figured a little sweet talk couldn’t hurt. (Click to enlarge)

The looming arrival of Hurricane Sandy lent an eerie vibe to an otherwise ordinary Sunday in autumn yesterday. Businesses in downtown Red Bank taped their windows as a precaution while the whitecapped Navesink River spilled over its banks at high tide, offering a preview of watery destruction yet to come.

Borough government and schools are to be closed Monday and Tuesday, with no sanitation or leaf pickups.

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FAIR HAVEN GETS ITS TOES WET

Illuminated by the headlights of their car, a couple snaps pictures of the Navesink River just as it breaches the deck of the Fair Haven dock around 9:30 p.m. Sunday. (Click to enlarge)

No evacuations were ordered in the riverfront town of Fair Haven, though borough offices and schools are to be closed at least through Monday, and will reopen when conditions “are deemed safe for employees to return,” according to a message on the town website. Also, garbage collection is suspended until further notice.

LITTLE SILVER EXPECTS ‘SEVERE’ FLOODING

Sandbags outside Gianni’s Pizza, at Church Street and Prospect Avenue in Little Silver Sunday afternoon as the region braced for the arrival of Hurricane Sandy. 

With flooding “expected to be severe” in low-lying sections of the borough, a voluntary evacuation was suggested by emergency management officials Saturday. Parking was made available to borough residents at the town-owned parking lot at the Little Siver train station.

Borough government and schools, including Red Bank Regional High, are closed Monday and Tuesday. (Click to enlarge)

GOOGLE FORECASTS HIGHEST SURGES HERE

The above map indicates that the probability of storm surges of six feet or more accompanying Hurricane Sandy are greater along the Navesink River, upper Shrewsbury River, Sandy Hook Bay and New York Harbor than nearly anywhere else along the storm’s path.

The map, created by the Google Crisis Response team, reflects geographic data from a variety of sources, including official information sources and user-generated content.

SEA BRIGHT BATTENS DOWN FOR WALLOPING

Residents crowded the downtown bus stop and shopkeepers boarded up windows Sunday afternoon in anticipation of Hurricane Sandy. (Photo by Rebecca Desfosse. Click to enlarge)

By: REBECCA DESFOSSE

Most or all of the Sea Bright residents who were leaving town had complied with a so-called mandatory evacuation order or were in the process of doing so, Mayor Dina Long told redbankgreen shortly before 6 p.m. Sunday.

But among the town’s 1,800 residents are some who refuse to leave, and town officials said they have no legal wherewithal to force them to do so, even with a hurricane expected to inflict historic damage tracking northward.

“That’s what they do – they ride out storms,” said Long. “I’m hoping an praying that they don’t have to be rescued.”

Councilman and emergency services liaison Read Murphy said police and volunteers ran a check of the streets in town after a 4 p.m. evacuation horn was sounded, marking the departure deadline.

“We just let them know, if you get in trouble, we’re not going to come get you,” he said of the holdouts.

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SEA BRIGHT READIES FOR POSSIBLE STORM

If the TV cameras are out in Sea Bright, a storm must be brewing: Councilman Read Murphy being interviewed Thursday. Below, a rainfall forecast map issued early Friday by the National Weather Service. (Click to enlarge)

By JOHN T. WARD

In Sea Bright, a spit of sand laid down between a mighty ocean and a fast-moving river, they’re taking this one seriously.

For the first time since Hurricane-slash-Tropical Storm Irene 14 months ago, the town’s business owners and officials say they’re bracing for a possible weather wallop – this time in the form of a combined Hurricane Sandy from the south and cold front from the north.

It’s a collision that’s already been dubbed ‘Frankenstorm‘ four days in advance of its expected arrival. The New York Times says it could produce “a historic and potentially devastating storm” for the Northeast.

“It’s coming. It’s bad,” said Cono Trezza, owner of Sea Bright Pizza on Ocean Avenue. He’s thinking of sandbagging the front and back doors of the recently remodeled space.

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THE AXEMAN COMETH

An unidentified axe-wielding man, one of two on the scene, chops away at a tree that fell across Harding Road just east of Spring Street in a thunderstorm that blew through the Green Thursday evening. (Click to enlarge)

CALM HEADS SOUGHT FOR EMERGENCY TEAM

Tommy Welsh and Ernie Van Pelt with an all-weather truck Red Bank’s emergency services operation acquired for free last year from Long Branch. (Click to enlarge)

By JOHN T. WARD

It happens fairly often, Red Bank officials say: someone will express interest in volunteering as a firefighter or first aider, but when informed about what’s involved in terms of training and commitment, he or she begs out.

With first aiders required to put in some 130 hours in training, and firefighters 200 or so hours, “most people who want to volunteer say they can’t commit that much time,” says Tommy Welsh, the head of the borough’s Office of Emergency Management and the town’s deputy fire marshal.

Now, there’s a third way to help during disasters, both actual and potential, said Welsh: the Community Emergency Response Team. And an open house to detail the opportunity is scheduled for later this month.

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A ‘LITTLE KISS,’ THEN GOODNIGHT, IRENE

Braced for the worst, and recalling the devastation caused by the northeaster of 1992, the borough of Sea Bright evacuated all residents in advance of the arrival of Hurricane Irene Saturday. Even emergency personnel were ready to relocate to Rumson if things got as bad as forecast.

But less than 24 hours after what was supposed to have been the peak of a horrific storm, residents and business owners on the narrow spit of sand had one word to describe what they experienced when Irene, by then downgraded to a tropical storm, blew through: “lucky.”

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THREE MIDDLETOWN BRIDGES SWAMPED

shadow-lakeRushing water from Shadow Lake left a gaping hole in Hubbard Avenue, above. Below, a truck fords flooding at the Poricy Pond culvert on Navesink River Road, site of a 2010 washout. (Click to enlarge)

By JOHN T. WARD

nav-riv-rd-2Three Middletown bridges were overrun by floodwaters in Sunday’s storm, knocking at least two of them out of commission for the foreseeable future.

One of the three was the Navesink River Road culvert at Poricy Pond. This is the same culvert that Monmouth County had to close for rebuilding in 2010 after rushing storm flows undermined the roadway.

Its current condition wasn’t immediately known, but Middletown police have closed the bridge as impassable. In addition, there’s a fallen tree leaning on wires at that site.

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WHAT WE’RE HEARING 1

Water main break on Ocean Avenue, Sea Bright, near MerriMakers…

Large tree down at Sycamore and Silverbrook in Shrewsbury…

Sea Bright police having “serious radio problems.”

Tree down, Pearl and Central, Red Bank…

SALVATION ARMY TAKES IN NURSING HOME

just_in1Emergency officials have brokered a deal under which the Red Bank Salvation Army facility will provide temporary shelter for most of the 113 elderly patients of a nursing home ordered evacuated Saturday in the face of Hurricane Irene.

Borough emergency management coordinator Tommy Welsh tells redbankgreen that under a deal facilitated by the Monmouth County and state offices of emergency management 80 resident of the Chapin Hill at Red Bank nursing home will be moved just two blocks away, to higher ground, at the Salvation Army building on Newman Springs Road.

“We thought at this point it would be a home run if we could just move them up the hill,” Welsh said, noting that the four-story nursing home on Chapin Avenue is just yards from the Swimming River, in a flood zone. “If, god forbid, something should happen down there, we wouldn’t be able to get to them.”

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GULP.

irene-sledger-082611Have they got your attention now?

The front page of today’s Star-Ledger is dominated by a single story, headlined “N.J.’s MOST DEVASTATING STORM EVER?’ (Click to enlarge)

From NJ.com, the Sledger’s website:

New Jersey is wearing the bull’s-eye for what could turn out to be the state’s worst storm ever, a Category 2 hurricane packing winds that could reach 100 mph, pushing a wall of water from the ocean as high as 12 feet and spreading floodwaters to inland towns.

Clearly, the newspaper reflects the consensus judgment of experts that we’re in for a potentially catastrophic storm come Sunday as Hurricane Irene lumbers north along the East Coast, with threat levels classified as “extreme” from the Carolinas to New England.

JULY 29, 1961: RED BANK’S WETTEST DAY

canal-street-flood-2Pedestrians fording floodwaters in downtown Red Bank during the storm of July 29, 1961. The view is north along Broad Street from the corner of Canal Street. Below, a teen dives off car into the water. (Photo courtesy of Dorn’s Classic Images)

By EVAN SOLTAS

fender-diveFifty years ago today, Red Bank was hit with the worst flood in borough history.

Over the course of several hours that Saturday morning and afternoon in 1961, 5.48 inches of rain fell, triggering the sort of flash flood that the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration says occurs, on average, once every 100 to  to 200 years in the area.

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TRANSFORMER BLOWS IN LITTLE SILVER

white-rd-2

white-rd-062311-1A brief, strong storm that blew through the Green prompted an emergency response on White Road in Little Silver Thursday afternoon. Though fire officials were not immediately available for comment, a neighbor said it appeared that lightning sheared a tree, above, and struck nearby wires, causing a transformer on White to explode, sending debris up to fifty yards away. No injuries were reported, and the road was reopened after a brief shutdown. (Photos courtesy of Eric Flaherty; click to enlarge)