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news release

P.O. Box 600
Trenton, NJ
Contact: Steve Schapiro
Daniel Triana
RELEASE: July 24, 2017

NJDOT to dredge Forked River Channels
in Ocean County

Project will restore five channels to ensure safe navigation

(Trenton) - New Jersey Department of Transportation (NJDOT) officials today announced a project to dredge five State navigation channels in the Forked River area in Ocean County.

The work is part of a $2.5 million project to dredge the Forked River and Barnegat Bay Channels. It is necessary to ensure safe navigation and to maintain the Forked River, Forked River Middle Branch and Spur, the South Spur, and the channel known as the “Elks” Channel in a state of good repair.

In preparation for the dredging, NJDOT’s contractor, Great Lakes Dredge and Dock Company, LLC, is working during daylight hours, seven days a week to place pipeline in the channels, which will be both submerged and floating. The pipeline will be used to pump the dredged material to the Oyster Creek Confined Disposal Facility.

Dredging operations are expected to begin in early- to mid-August and continue 24-hours-a-day, seven-days-a-week through the end of September. Channel use will be limited where the dredge is in operation and where the pipeline is carrying dredged material to its placement location. Channel closures are not expected, although this is subject to change. Upon completion of the Forked River channels, work will move to the Barnegat Bay Channels project.

Mariners should be advised that State Aids to Navigation (ATON) will be removed as necessary for the duration of the project.  All mariners, including those utilizing human powered craft, should be especially alert to project pipeline routes and crossings. Updates to the Local Notice to Mariners should be expected as the project progresses.

The public is advised to be aware of and stay alert to the pipeline, buoys, dredge and other equipment during this time. NJDOT asks that no one approach the pipeline, dredge or any related project equipment under any circumstances, whether or not active dredging operations are observed.  These channels in the Forked River area can be especially narrow at times and boaters should proceed through dredging maintenance and construction zones with the utmost caution.  No wake speed should be observed throughout the duration of the project. 

Since shortly after Superstorm Sandy, in March 2014 the NJDOT announced a comprehensive State Channel Dredging and Emergency Response Program to ensure and maintain safe navigation statewide, and to continue to be able to respond adequately to waterway impacts from named storms.

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  Department of Transportation
  P.O. Box 600
  Trenton, NJ 08625-0600
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  Last Updated:  July 24, 2017