The Jet Star Rollercoaster at the Jersey Shore
, one of the most recognizable images of Hurricane Sandy's destruction to the North East that is submerged in the Atlantic Ocean, is finally coming down.
This week construction crews began demolishing the JetStar roller coaster, a steel skeleton that was once busy thrilling families on Casino Pier in Seaside Heights.
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During the October 29 storm, the roller coaster plunged off the pier into the ocean, and on Tuesday, a massive claw pulled the fixture out. Three other rides – a log flume, haunted house and scrambler – are also being raised this week, officials told NorthJersey.com.
“This is what we needed to happen,” Seaside Heights Mayor Bill Akers said. “We needed a visual to assure people that when they come down here not only will it be safe and you will have a boardwalk to be on but you will be able to go in the water.”
The ride has 1,100 feet of track, according to NorthJersey.com. Two floating barges, one with a crane and clamshell bucket, tore and plucked the steel pieces from the water.
Part of the ride will be recovered and rebuilt in a memorial on Casino Pier in 2014, according to Toby Wolf, a spokeswoman for Casino Pier. Officials have not yet determined what will happen to the rest of the ride's remains.
Weeks Marine of Cranford, New Jersey are handling the cleanup. Wolf did not disclose how much it will cost.
The marine construction company surveyed the water to conclude how much debris pollutes the area. After clearing the rides, the crews will take sonar images to ensure all of the debris has been removed, Wolf said.
Casino Pier, which was also destroyed in the storm, will be built up again with 18 new adult and kiddie rides, arcades, game stands, and food on the lower deck in the next few months. The upper deck, where the four rides were, will be demolished for now and reopen in 2014.
Superstorm, a high-thrill pendulum that swings back and forward and goes upside down, will open as a tribute to Mother Nature, Akers said.
“We hope it’s perceived in a positive way. We know the force of Mother Nature and we respect that and this is our way to celebrate it,” he said.
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