Sea Pines sand dunes pushed back by 8 feet by Matthew

HILTON HEAD ISLAND, SC (WTOC) - The renourishment project on Hilton Head Island is moving right along despite some setbacks from Hurricane Matthew.

Crews have been able to replace eroded sand and make their way south to the newest phase, but the storm also presented some new problems there at the beach. Some Sea Pines homeowners found a new meaning to beach-front property.

Strong waves and high tides from Matthew pushed sand dunes at Sea Pines back by at least eight feet, leaving most of these homes exposed to future severe weather.

Currently, crews are working southwards along the Palmetto Dunes Oceanfront, placing close to 600,000 cubic yards of sand.

The town hopes to have that phase completed within the next few weeks. But in between, the town has been looking to address the erosion at the southern portion of the island where Matthew displaced about 200,000 cubic yards of sand from the mile and a half of shoreline there alone.

The renourishment project director explained what they've been doing to protect those property owners.

"We've been working with our contractor to execute these emergency protective measures, mainly a sand scraping project there on the southern shoreline adjacent to Sea Pines pushing a protective berm up in front of those private properties that affords them a little bit of protection shall we have some severe weather over the course of the winter," said project manager, Scott Liggett.

These berms are a temporary solution. On the permanent side, the town is looking at replacing the sand displaced from the storm similar to what they're doing with the current renourishment project.

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