Digest>Archives> Mar/Apr 2012

Saving West Point Lighthouse


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As we reported, with dramatic photos in the March 2011 edition of Lighthouse Digest, Canada’s Prince Edward Island’s 1876 West Point Lighthouse came close to being destroyed in storm surge in December of 2010.

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It is now hoped that a new major erosion control system installed at historic lighthouse will prevent any future severe storm from causing the ocean to claim the lighthouse.

The new barrier was created by digging a trench approximately two and half feet deep in an arc in front of the lighthouse and attached inn. Next, a series of twelve foot vertical and horizontal steel I-beams were welded together and inserted in an angle into the trench. The existing sand dune then formed the back wall. This was followed by bolting the 3x6-inch hemlock planks to the I-beams followed by piling rocks behind the planks that were then covered by a geo-tech fabric that was then covered by sand.

The angle of the planks, the spaces between the planks and the stones are meant to deflect the energy of the waves in a future storm surge. Hopefully West Point Lighthouse will now be protected for years to come with no more close calls as was witnessed in the storm surge of 2010.

This story appeared in the Mar/Apr 2012 edition of Lighthouse Digest Magazine. The print edition contains more stories than our internet edition, and each story generally contains more photographs - often many more - in the print edition. For subscription information about the print edition, click here.

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