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Folly Beach's new sand washes away

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FOLLY BEACH, S.C. (WCIV) -- The Folly Beach renourishment project had a setback after last week's stormy weather. The storms washed away the new sand just added to the shore.

A backhoe on Folly Beach is scooping the shore to help move water from the edges of the Edge of America.

Chris Wiggins owns a rental house here and says he noticed nature’s fury.

"Sand came all the way up, probably level with this bulk head. And as you can see where we're at today it’s almost back to the levels it was before renourishment," said Wiggins.

That $30-million beach renourishment effort is providing much needed help for a coast that’s been battered by bad weather. But property owners like Chris Wiggins question the project’s effectiveness.

"Personally I think it’s a waste of money. And I think we could have done, you know, they could have came up with a better solution," said Wiggins.

"It might look like it had failed, but actually it did its job," said David Warren, project manager for the US Army Corps of Engineers.

Warren says it’s impossible to stop beach erosion, although it can be slowed. Along Folly, the goal is to safeguard its homes.

"I think what some people something think that we're building brand new beaches. But we're actually building a storm protection berm to protect infrastructure and property," said Warren.

It's property he says that’s been threatened historically.

"When we've looked into past records, what we're seeing here is what's traditionally happened on the east end of Folly Beach. And it's just nature running its course on this particular stretch of beach," said Warren.

For now, renourishment efforts continue while trying to preserve the beach’s beauty for years to come.

  • Bill Burr

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