Family Says Bye To OC
I was reading some of the other op/ed letters and there’s a lot of talk about ideas on how to retain a loyal following of returning guests.
I used to be one of those loyal visitors that loves Ocean City, but what follows is the reason my family will not be returning.
I was surprised that no one else has mentioned it, at least not that I saw so I wanted to offer my two cents. After talking with other families about our bad experience this summer, OC is missing the big picture. OC has not only lost its fun, it has become downright dangerous.
I have been coming to Ocean City every summer for more than 40 years. I have many fond childhood memories of long wave rides on an inflatable raft, sometimes coupling up with a second wave and sliding all the way up onto the shore. Low tide was a fun time to check out the shells, dig up sand crabs, finding little creatures left behind in the pools and building sand castles on the hard sand of the gently sloping beach.
The lifeguard stands were 50 to 75 feet back from the low tide mark. Parents could pull a chair down to the water’s edge and not worry about getting wiped out. Those days are gone. You can barely tell the difference between high and low tide. There is no hard sand to take a beach walk on or shallow wash to dip a little baby’s toes into, just an uncomfortable slope right into deep water.
The guards now have to place their chairs at the edge of the sand cliff where the waves crash onto the shore. People crowd the edge to be able to see their children over the drop. The beach replenishment has ruined the topography of the beach to the point that the waves are now dangerous shore breaking curlers, especially at high tide. Both of my kids have had close calls the last few summers that fortunately did not end in a lifelong neck injury like the one we witnessed this summer — it was terrifying and horribly tragic.
We will no longer be making the trip to OC. I began to warn all of my friends about this danger when we got home and I was surprised by the response from many others – they have already noticed it and will not be returning either.
Goodbye OC, time to start a new tradition at a safer beach.
Regarding the recent story, “Home Energy Audit Called Key To Reducing Waste,” the North American Insulation Manufacturers Association (NAIMA) writes this letter in response to The Dispatch’s disparaging characterization of fiber glass and biased promotion of cellulose and spray foam products. Mr. Allen Luzak of Total Home Performance is quoted as saying, “In my opinion … they should outlaw fiberglass insulation … spray foam, spray foam, spray foam everything.”
Mr. Luzak and The Dispatch obviously have the right to promote spray foam insulation and to express their views about the relative benefits of spray foam insulation products compared to other products, but those rights do not extend to the publication of disparaging statements about fiber glass insulation.
If The Dispatch and Mr. Luzak are anxious to outlaw insulation products, would it not be prudent to start with those products that pose significant disadvantages. For example, a Maryland inspector reported about an insulation contractor who completely foamed all the walls, roof sheating, ridge vents, attic fan and soffit vents.
The fan and vents ceased to function. In addition, significant fire and explosion hazards exist during installation of spray foam products. The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) has identified several fatalities and incidents due to severe asthmatic attacks and fire/explosions associated with the use of isocyanate-containing materials (which is one of the chemical hazards in spray foam products). The National Institute of Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH) also warns about spray foam insulation in its document, “Preventing Asthma and Death from Diisocyanate Exposure.”
One disadvantage of cellulose insulation is, if improperly installed, it can cause fires when the insulation is placed near a heat source. In fact, the Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) regulates cellulose insulation as a recognized fire threat. To protect against that fire threat, CPSC regulations mandate the proper installation to avoid house fires. Improper installation of cellulose is so serious that this warning label must be affixed: Manufactuers of cellulose insulation shall label all containers of cellulose insulation with the following statement, using capital letters, caution potential fire hazard.
NAIMA encourages The Dispatch to avoid biased and disparaging characterizations of products when reporting and writing articles.
Angus E. Crane
(The writer is the Executive Vice President, General Counsel for NAIMA.)