Flagler Beach holds emergency meeting after severe dune erosion

City manager says increased erosion could impact A1A, people’s safety

Severe erosion on Flagler Beach’s dunes has city leaders looking for solutions before it leads to even bigger problems. The city commission held an emergency meeting Wednesday with the hope to bring help in soon to restore the beach.

FLAGLER BEACH, Fla. – Severe erosion on Flagler Beach’s dunes has city leaders looking for solutions before it leads to even bigger problems. The city commission held an emergency meeting Wednesday with the hope to bring help in soon to restore the beach.

“It can’t wait until next year. It can’t even wait until next month. I think all of us have been down there to see what is going on and it appears that it’s just going to get worse,” Commissioner Ken Bryan said in the meeting.

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The more eroded the dunes become on Flagler Beach, the closer the problem gets to A1A. The city commission held the meeting after they said the erosion became even more severe in recent weeks.

“It possibly has to do with the super moon phenomenon, higher tides, different kinds of wave action and there could be some connection to sea level rising,” said William Whitson, city manager.

Whatever the reason, Whitson said they need to find solutions fast for the sake of the road, pier and people’s safety. Right now, there are visibly big drop-offs along the stretch from 5th to 3rd Street on A1A.

“We have infrastructure concerns. How are we going to access the beach in the right way to not cause further problems?” he said.

Next year, the Army Corps of Engineers will be working to restore a 2.6 mile stretch of the beach, but Whitson said they need to get boots on the ground sooner.

The city commission decided at Monday’s meeting to hear the county’s solutions next week in hopes they could help bring in resources soon. The county is expected to see the results of an engineering firm’s study Monday.

“We want some additional information that the county has. They’re going to have a workshop on Monday, (Aug. 15) and the commission wants to see what discussion is held there,” Whitson said.

Then, the topic could go back on the city commission’s agenda for the Aug. 18 meeting, during which commissioners would create an action plan.

In the meantime, they’re asking beachgoers to avoid going near the dunes.

“We have scarfing in severe drop. In different places, there (are) times where the tide comes up and there’s nothing but rocks at the bottom so be smart be safe,” Whitson said.

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Molly joined News 6 at the start of 2021, returning home to Central Florida.