Toms River's Office of Emergency Management has issued a voluntary evacuation for residents living in low-lying areas, as flooding is expected from a nor'easter forecast to strike the Shore area.
Toms River Department of Public Works employees have been working to strengthen beach dunes in preparation of the storm, which is forecast to begin as a rain event in coastal areas after 8 a.m. Wednesday and continue through late Thursday, with the potential for the precipitation to turn to snow.
Crews are "busy moving more sand onto the beach, in anticipation of the storm," said township Public Information Officer Debbi Winogracki. "In areas where homeowners have not signed easements for dune replenishment, the DPW is placing sand on the streets so that water does not get to the homes."
The Toms River Office of Emergency Management has been "closely monitoring" the storm and is urging residents to stay updated on conditions.
Toms River Police Chief Michael Mastronardy said he would meet Tuesday with the township’s public works department to discuss possible preparations, according to NJ.com.
"Various township equipment and vehicles are being moved to higher ground," Winogracki said.
Toms River took substantial damage during Sandy — 67 people currently live in the Ortley Beach section of town, where there are 2,400 homes — but Mastronardy is "cautiously optimistic" the township’s newly built dunes will protect from whatever surges this storm produces, according to NJ.com.
There are parts of town where dunes were not rebuilt on private swaths of the shore, and those areas are especially at risk for flooding, Mastronardy said.