The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers will begin annual Grays
Harbor maintenance dredging in the Outer Harbor April 1, 2016.
Seattle-based Manson Construction Co., is contracted to
dredge one and a quarter million cubic yards of material out of the navigation
channel from the bar to the middle of the harbor, working through May 31.
Manson’s Bayport Dredge will place material at the existing South Beach
nourishment site and the Washington State Department of Natural
Resources-managed Point Chehalis open water disposal site.
Crab pots in the navigation channel, access channel to
the South Beach disposal area and both disposal sites need to be moved by
owners before April 1, according to Corps Seattle District officials. Fishermen
and crabbers are encouraged to position themselves and/or gear at least 300
feet from any channel and disposal area boundary in order to provide a buffer
zone to allow for the gear drifting. Gear that drifts into the navigation channel,
access channel and/or disposal areas may be damaged or destroyed.
District officials work with state and federal agencies
and Native American Nations to minimize harm to the aquatic ecosystem. They
prepare a Biological Evaluation in accordance with the Endangered Species Act
and Environmental Assessment in accordance with the National Environmental
Corps officials assure full compliance with the acts
prior to starting. Potential dredging and disposal operations impacts are also
avoided through implementation of U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service-designated
timing restrictions. In addition, local crab fishermen assist by temporarily
relocating during operations.
Portland District-assigned dredges Essayons and Yaquina
typically support Seattle District Grays Harbor operations but will be
conducting dredging elsewhere. Because of this, Manson Construction received
the West Coast Hopper Maintenance Dredging 2016 project for nearly $18 million
from the Portland District. The project involves maintenance dredging at Grays
Harbor, San Francisco and Columbia River.
Release no. 16-008