A Dangerous Spot - 27 East

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Southampton Press / Opinion / Letters / 1547776

A Dangerous Spot

A Dangerous Spot

Call me stupid — you are right — but I’m glad it was me who sank into soft or “quick” sand at Havens Beach, so that I may warn the public.

Every day is different at Havens Beach, and I want to know the moods of the beach, so I went there in the middle of the storm on October 10, at low tide in the morning. A strong wind was coming from the north, driving waves and, I learned, soft sand onto the beach, especially where the dreen water meets the bay water.

I started to walk across the beach at the edge of the bay water, where the dreen water enters the bay, and didn’t make it. I sank in the sand up to just below my kneecaps and couldn’t move. No one was on the beach, and I was out of sight of people in a couple of parked cars.

Fortunately for me, I had a walking stick with a broad, blunt end, which I used to balance myself as I slowly worked to free one leg after the other, and again. I then walked the full length of the beach and encountered no further dangerous accumulation of soft sand.

For decades, soft beach sand has been deposited in the bay where dreen water excavates sand from the beach as it travels over it and carries the sand into the bay. There, it is often soft, and waders and myself have said they may lose their balance or tell of an animal becoming stuck.

My experience may be extreme, but with the agreed-to plan to widen the dreen pipe, more water will be passing through the system, at a faster rate. This plan also includes the cutting of phragmites, which will further increase the speed of water through the system.

I fear excelled erosion of beach soft sand to the bay and its consequences.

A partial solution: Don’t cut the phragmites.

Jean Held

Sag Harbor

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