By amusementtoday | November 2, 2012
WILDWOOD and JACKSON, N.J. — With a collective sigh of relief and gratitude, New Jersey’s two largest amusement operators — Morey’s Piers in the Cape May County beach town of Wildwood and Six Flags Great Adventure in Jackson — have emerged from Hurricane Sandy largely unscathed.
“The damage Morey’s Piers sustained was less extensive that we expected for our area,” said Maggie Warner, digital media and public relations manager. “No structural damage has been observed and only minor damages have occurred throughout the piers and waterparks. Minor flooding occurred in one of the beach-level maintenance shops and a few waterpark pumps and motors were damaged due to some flooding. Some signage and lights were damaged in the storm and general debris from the storm was scattered throughout the facilities.”
Warner credits advance storm preparation at Morey’s with minimizing losses. This included dismantling all Halloween attractions and decorations, securing loose items that could become projectiles, removing control panels and cleaning out pump pits and drains in maintenance areas. In addition, Go-Karts were moved to a higher elevation.
“With the help, dedication, and hard work of our staff we were able to hurricane-proof our piers and facilities,” said Warner, noting that Morey’s 2013 season plans and improvements remain on track. “Another priority was ensuring that our staff had ample time to secure their own homes and make the necessary preparations to keep themselves and their families safe.
“We are very fortunate and blessed….Our thoughts and prayers are with our Eastern Seaboard neighbors that have been harder hit by the hurricane, and we hope that in time they are able to rebuild and recover what they have lost.”
In central New Jersey, located only a few miles west of some of the state’s most devastated shore communities, Six Flags Great Adventure acknowledged it was “lucky.”
“We escaped the brunt of the storm,” said Kristin Siebeneicher, park communications director. “Since we are inland, we were not affected by the storm surge that caused all the coastal and island damage. We were very fortunate — there was no flooding and we have just minor damage including downed trees and park cleanup. All of our rides, animals and buildings are secure.”
The park’s readiness procedure involved ensuring that the large wild animal population of its safari area was safely inside winter housing ahead of the storm. Property modifications and enhancements announced earlier for 2013 will proceed as scheduled.
“Our prayers and best wishes are with all of those impacted by the storm,” Siebeneicher said.
Watch for additional Northeast storm coverage in the December edition of AMUSEMENT TODAY, in your email via AT’s daily Extra! Extra! Desktop Edition and at amusementtoday.com.