The New Jersey coast is facing a “sandstorm” that is causing widespread power outages, and the state is closing beaches in the state for the second time this year, according to state officials.
The New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection has been closed to the public for the last two days as crews battle to clear sand from the beaches.
The sandstorm, which began on Saturday morning, was a “very serious” threat to the state’s coastline, and it was being assessed and dealt with, the department said in a statement.
State officials closed beaches in New Jersey’s Upper Valley on Saturday and closed roads and bridges in the region for two days, as well.
The state has been trying to restore power to more than 30,000 customers, many of them in communities that have been hit hard by Hurricane Sandy.