New Jersey officials have been working for months to clear Sandy debris out of the ocean and in back bays up and down the Jersey Shore, but boaters and swimmers are still being advised to stay vigilant for possible problems.

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

"We still think it's prudent for the public to keep an eye out, make sure that they're just a little extra cautious. There are some places in some of the harder hit communities where there could be debris in the water," says Department of Environmental Protection spokesman Larry Hajna.

He says thousands of cubic yards of material has been removed, and many channels have been re-marked.

"Everyone needs to stay alert, and if they see anything contact a lifeguard or reach out to the DEP's hotline, which is 877-WARN-DEP."

Hajna adds if boaters come upon debris in the water they should not take it upon themselves to try to remove it, just report what they see, and let the professionals do their job.

He also points out water quality testing has been on-going at the beaches and back bay areas, and the results so far have been very good - with testing for bacteria required by the EPA coming up negative - so everyone can enjoy the shore, but they should stay alert.


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