Canal Dredging continues to progress well. As of Saturday, Dec 8th, a mile of the approximately two-mile long canal has been dredged. The dredge has been advancing at the rate of approximately 200 to 300 feet a day. A booster pump was installed on the barge behind the dredge toward the end of last week in order to provide the additional energy required to pump the material the increased distance. This booster is part of the dredge assembly and will move forward with the dredge.
Surprisingly, most of the material removed to date has been sand. The lighter, silty material is being washed from the heavy sand by the dredging process. A long reach track hoe has been mobilized to the disposal area to move some of the clean sand out of the Confined Disposal Facility (CDF) onto high ground on the south side of the dike, as well as rearrange the material within the CDF. This action should allow additional storage volume, prevent the sand from being washed further out into the CDF and allow more efficient operations toward the end of the project.
Baring major equipment malfunctions, the dredge should be in the vicinity of Marsh Creek Landing before the Christmas shutdown. Christmas shutdown is tentatively planned to begin the afternoon of Saturday, Dec. 22nd through Wed. Dec. 26th; returning to work on Thursday, Dec. 27th.