DEP Removes Abandoned Sailboats from Tuckerton Creek Marshland

Nov 01, 2017
Photo by: Pat Johnson Jim Manuel from the state DEP Bureau of Emergency Response watches the removal procedure from Carroll Avenue in Tuckerton Beach.

Two sailboats that washed onto state land adjoining Tuckerton Creek a year ago were removed by the New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection’s Bureau of Emergency Response last Friday.

Bureau Director Jim Manuel was on the scene as Tow Boat US readied the abandoned vessels to be towed from the Great Bay Boulevard Wildlife Management Area. “We contracted to have them removed. You need specialized equipment to do this,” said Manuel. “They’re sitting on state land and that’s the main reason why we’re involved.”

The two boats have two separate owners, who will be billed for the expense the state is incurring in removing the boats, said Manuel. The state Marine Police and the DEP conservation police worked together to track down the owners through boat registration numbers, he said. Neither boat had leaked any fuel or oil into the marsh, he asserted.

The boats are 35 and 36 feet long and have extensive keels that made pulling them off the marsh a bit difficult at low tide. Men from Tow Boat US first used a pump to remove the water from the hulls, cut and secured the masts, then attached tow ropes and pulled them into the water. They were lashed to the tow boat for a quick trip to Shelter Cove Marina across the creek in Tuckerton Beach.

Manuel said the bigger of the two boats might require a tow truck to winch it into the water. Shelter Cove used its travel winch to put the boats on a tow truck for the trip to a scrap yard in New Egypt, where the once beautiful pleasure craft would end their days.

— Pat Johnson



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