Issues Facing Menauhant Beach West in Falmouth Continue

FALMOUTH – Conditions at Menauhant Beach West in Falmouth continue to be dangerous and unsafe for public use.

“Menauhat West is near death,” beach superintendent Bruce G. Mogardo said to the Falmouth Board of Selectmen at last week’s meeting, “it is that bad.”

Due to erosion over the course of the last few years, the old road bridge is now exposed, causing public concern.

The uncovered bridge is being secured by Falmouth DPW with a snow fence and hazard signs.

“What exists right now is the DPW attempted to secure, with snow fence, the bridge, that’s been vandalized already in less than a week and a half, nails are exposed, wood is exposed, rusty bolts are exposed, and it’s a major issue,” continued Mogardo.  

“Temporary hazard signs have been put up, permanent signs have been ordered.”

Noting the exposed rebar and rusted nails at the bridge, Selectman Douglas C. Brown questioned the effectiveness of these temporary measures.

“I just don’t think the snow fence is adequate for another year,” Brown said.

When Brown asked if the DPW could cover the exposed bridge with sand Deputy Director of Public Works Peter M. McConarty said beach nourishment in that area would require approval from the local Conservation Commission and two state agencies.

In addition, McConarty cited the town’s 2011-2012 comprehensive dredge permit which states sand cannot be added to Menauhant West.

Barbara P. Schneider, a resident of Sandcastle Drive in East Falmouth, spoke about the issue, “Menauhant is in desperate need of both short term and long term fixes, this year we need to have temporary coverage for the wood of the old bridge and for stairs to allow beachgoers to walk from the parking area to the western section of the beach.”

Schneider also recommended pulling out or pounding down the rusted nails, securing the exposed structures, and no longer allowing beachgoers to dive into the dangerous areas of the water.   

Mary Ellen Alwardt, president of East Falmouth Village Association commented on the danger of the beach, “It is horrific, accidents could happen, it could be fatal, you could lose an eye on those spikes, there are so many things out there that you could get hurt one.”

Selectmen acknowledged the dangers of the area.

“That, to me is just a lawsuit waiting to happen,” Selectmen Chairman Megan E. English Braga said, “There are just a million different ways someone could get injured.”

Selectmen instructed the Department of Public Works to work on temporary fixes to block off access to the exposed bridge and other dangerous elements at Menauhant West.

Town Manager Julian M. Suso said he will report back to the board at its next meeting.

Selectmen also voted to convert the Menauhant West parking lot from a resident and tourist parking lot to a resident only parking lot.

About Rob Woodard

Rob Woodard has been reporting on news for the CapeCod.com NewsCenter for five years. Listen to his news reporting on 99.9 the Q, Ocean 104.7, Cape Country 104, Cape Classical 107.5 and here on CapeCod.com.



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