PHIPPSBURG, Maine (NEWS CENTER) -- Storm after storm this winter has slammed the Maine coastline, causing serious erosion at some of the state's beaches.
"Popham Beach in itself fluxes back and forth, but it seems to me - you know I've been here my whole life - that the erosion has escalated for some unknown reason," said Lee Rainey, Phippsburg's code enforcement officer. "We've got some people that are pretty close to losing their cottages."
Rainey says erosion forms storms has historically been a problem at Popham Beach, but the ocean's winds and waves have been especially destructive the past decade. Over the past few years as much as two hundred feet of dunes have been washed away, threatening homes and the only road into this part of town, and there is little property owners or the town can do to stop it.
"These folks have been there forever, and you know, this one lady who is right on the corner and is very close to losing her cottage, has been for 40 or 50 years," explained Rainey. "She is in her 90's - and I just want them to be able to live out the rest of their lives in their cottages."
Police Chief John Skroski says the situation is starting to have an impact people's safety.
"The changes that I have seen at Popham are drastic," the chief stated. "I can't believe every year more and more of the beach is disappearing, and now we are seeing cliffs edging Route 209."
"We have got to be certain that that road is secure and safe, that a storm doesn't come in and wash it out and cut off all our residences because there is no other egress, there is no other exit from that section."
Chief Skroski is also worried that once the weather warms up, people who flock to the beach will become stranded as sections of the beach are now underwater at mid-tide.