Another iconic image of Superstorm Sandy’s destruction is being removed from the shore’s landscape. The home in Mantoloking washed into the bay by the storm is being demolished and removed.

Home being removed from Barnegat Bay (Ilya Hemlin, Townsquare Media NJ)
Home being removed from Barnegat Bay (Ilya Hemlin, Townsquare Media NJ)

Department of Environmental Protection Commissioner Bob Martin, Ocean County Freeholder Joe Vicari, Mantoloking Mayor George Nebel, and Brick Mayor Steve Acropolis attended the homes removal.

The home sits in the water 200 feet from the bay, one of the three homes from Mantoloking engulfed into the water by the storm. It is the home of former borough mayor David Roberts, who didn’t attend the ceremony.

“It’s too emotional for him.” Says Mantoloking Mayor George Nebel. The borough mayor points out removing the structure will be cathartic for residents. Mantoloking was the hardest hit community by Sandy, all 521 of its homes were damaged or destroyed and 58 were swept into the bay partially or in part.

Nebel says to compound the damage, borough residents are struggling with a 30% drop in property values as well as an increase in tax burdens for those still standing after Sandy. However he says the community wants to rebuild, and residents see the homes not as a monument but as debris.

“All the homes [in the water] will be removed all the homes that need to be demolished will be demolished starting Monday and we anticipate getting that done by the first of July.”

Demolition contractor CrowderGulf, who spearheaded the cleanup of the waters, placed a protective boom around the home to reign in debris, and then a floating crane slowly dismantled the home piece-by-piece while debris was placed on barges.

Home being removed from Barnegat Bay (Ilya Hemlin, Townsquare Media NJ)

“To date we’ve picked up over twenty thousand cubic yards out of the Bay.” Says Buddy Young, operations manager.

Young expects the entire house to be removed by Friday afternoon.

Two other virtually intact homes were washed into Barnegat Bay in Mantoloking, and one in Union Beach, a hard-hit blue collar enclave in Monmouth County, was washed into Raritan Bay. Four others in Cumberland County's Lawrence Township also wound up in Delaware Bay, virtually intact, Martin said.

Those remaining houses should be removed from waterways within the next few weeks, the commissioner said.