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Derelict barge being removed

Just one of five derelict barges remains off Chemainus after a third sunk Tuesday. Another was towed by the feds to Ladysmith’s Slag Point while Ottawa talks about derelict-boat laws.  - Peter W. Rusland/file
Just one of five derelict barges remains off Chemainus after a third sunk Tuesday. Another was towed by the feds to Ladysmith’s Slag Point while Ottawa talks about derelict-boat laws.
— image credit: Peter W. Rusland/file

Work is finally underway to remove and dispose of the second-to-last of five derelict barges that have been plaguing Ladysmith and Chemainus for years.

The provincial Ministry of Forest, Lands and Natural Resource Operations is currently dismantling the barge that has been beached near Slack Point in Ladysmith Harbour for the last couple of years.

The barge was supposed to be part of the breakwater for the failed Chemainus Quay project.

“Material from the former dry dock will be separated and stored on the point while the ministry looks at disposal options,” ministry staff stated in a mid-December e-mail.

“The remaining portions of this wreck are made of wood, steel and concrete. All of the garbage and other refuse has been removed and disposed of.”

Dismantling work is expected to be completed within the next week.

The Second World War-era dry docks were the the subject of complaints about being both an eyesore and a hazard to navigation in Chemainus Harbour.

The barge was in question was towed to Slack Point by Transport Canada in 2012 during an aborted clean-up project.

Three of the other barges have sunk.

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