OCEAN CITY – Dredging work in the Inlet channel and the nearby ebb shoal continued this week as part of a routine effort by the federal Army Corps of Engineers to keep the area open to navigation and supplement areas prone to beach erosion.
The Army Corps’ hopper dredge “Currituck” has been frequently been seen in and around the Inlet in recent weeks as part of an effort to maintain the depth of the Inlet and the ebb shoal. The channel often silts in over time and the “Currituck” returns each spring and fall to dredge the bottom and deposit the sand both on Assateague Island and on 33rd Street.
“This operation really serves three purposes,” said Ocean City Engineer Terry McGean. “It helps keep the Inlet open for navigation. It helps stabilize the Assateague shoreline by transporting a similar amount of sand as would have naturally migrated there if the Inlet did not exist, and it helps stabilize the beach around 33rd Street, which has a naturally higher erosion rate than the majority of the beach in Ocean City.”