‘Something out of a movie’: Part of roof blown off, cars damaged by debris following Neptune City high winds
Cleanup is underway in parts of Monmouth County, including in Neptune City, after severe weather rolled through the area and left extensive damage behind.
The storms hit the area Sunday just before 8 p.m.
A large part of the roof of the Neptune Motor Lodge was blown off, and cars were damaged by flying debris. On New York Avenue, the entire area was just littered with debris Sunday night from the roof, from other parts of the building. Cars and vehicles had windows blown out.
Viraj Ajmera, of the Neptune Motor Lodge, said it was "terrifying" experience. He said he saw sparks flying and yelled at relatives to stay sheltered in place.
“Everything started shaking and it was just, it was terrifying because you know, I didn't know what to do,” says Viraj. “Everything was shaking. I saw a light, first thing out outside, and you know I just I just called my little sister and we took shelter in the bathroom.”
He said he saw objects being tossed around the parking lot and described the damage as "something out of a movie."
His sister, Riya Ajmera, said she saw lights flickering inside the lodge, a light pole go down and flashing as the building started shaking.
“It was pretty loud,” says Riya. “It was a lot, you could just see everything falling, no idea what was going on. That was a terrifying part of it. While everything was going on, I was just in panic getting safe and letting making sure my brother was safe and my parents.”
Both Viraj and Riya Ajmera said the lodge's customers are OK. There were 11 people inside the hotel, but the back of building is damaged. One minor injury was reported when debris from the hotel blew several hundred yards onto Route 35.
An official for Monmouth County Office of Emergency Management said boats from the Shark River nearby were tossed around. He said one minor injury was also reported.
The National Weather Service says the damage was caused by straight-line winds.