Area beaches continue to recover from hurricanes



Melbourne Beach boardwalk under construction

The damage to beaches this year was a lot more than usually experienced in Brevard County. Many didn’t expect the two recent hurricanes — Ian and Nicole — were going to strengthen along the way and hit Melbourne back to back, leaving seaside damage in their wake.

The destruction caught freshman Kellyn Hoffmann by surprise.

“I went to the Eau Gallie beach last night and wow. Most of the boardwalks, or the stepways, were gone after both of the hurricanes,” Hoffmann said. “They ended up having to rebuild them and they’re almost done.”

Hoffmann said the sand is not where it used to be.

“Most of the sand is improperly placed,” Hoffmann said. “It looked like a dent by where the sand would usually be higher.”

Freshman surfer Tala Rukab said she agreed.

“The recent hurricanes have severely changed the beaches,” Rukab said. “The sand dunes have eroded and sand bars have disappeared.”

Rukab said she hasn’t surfed in a while but her friends have.

“My friends have said the waves are breaking in different spots than they normally do,” Rukab said. “Surfers and water sports [enthusiasts] who rely on waves have probably noticed changes in the way waves break.”

Hoffmann noticed something different about the beach vegetation as well.

“The grape vines on the back were pretty much still there but it was kind of disheveled,” Hoffmann said. “They weren’t supposed to be where they were.”

By Meghana Geddam