Sailors and fishermen alike are being hindered by a couple of pillars in Solent located at Stokes Bay, Gosport. The two pillars, made of concrete and wood materials, pose hazard to individuals and vessels that come in close contact with it. The pillars rising approximately eight meters from the seabed were used by an old pier that no longer exists leaving the structure intact.
There were reports that fisherman’s nets getting tangled in these poles and their boat hulls grinding against the remains causing inconvenience. The invisibility of the pillars can also cause potential harm to people passing by.
Southern Diving Unit 2 is the team responsible for the elimination of the mentioned hindrance. The team includes Royal Navy Divers and supervised by Chief Diver, Simon Crew.
“There were two obstructions that were under the surface and invisible for a number of years causing problems for sailors using this part of the Solent. When we went down to inspect the pillars we found an assortment of nets tangled around them where fishing trawlers had obviously not known they were there. Our role was to remove the pillars, using explosives, and clear this bit of waterway of hazards” he said.
The dive team secured a 350m perimeter surrounding the two pillars for the purpose of conducting a controlled explosion.
“By agreeing to carry out this controlled explosion our divers were being offered the opportunity to work in the arduous conditions of the Solent where they needed to consider the tides, depth, poor visibility, and other mariners in the area. It was a successful training opportunity that felled the two pillars and has made the area a bit safer for others.”
The effective operation has provided training and familiarization with such situations for the divers and at the same time resolved an issue that could be a possible threat if neglected.