Tug boat reef project in progress

TISIRI dove into the guts of the Tuff-E-Nuff this past Thursday and Friday. Since the vessel was partially filled with water and resting on a sandbar, the plan was to pump the tug out and take her out of the water for artificial reef preparations.

On Thursday Joe Kistel and Ed Kalakauskis were escorted to the tug by barge. The “to-be-reefed” vessel is about 150yards from the docks of a local boat yard in a shallow area of the river. The two were dropped off and told that the barge would not return until the tide came back in several hours later. Kistel and Kalakauskis were stuck about the Tuff-E-Nuff with plenty of work to do. They set up a few pumps and, although it took all day, the vessel was pumped dry.

On Friday, a few temporary patches were made to the haul and the vessel was further prepared for coming out of the water. The local boat facility has a piece of equipment they call a “rail road” which is basically a big boat trailer that operates on its own dedicated boat ramp. To make it work with a large vessel like the reef-tug, the tide has to be very high. So with a dead high tide forecasted to be around 6pm that evening, the plan was to start the process around 4:30-5pm. At about 4pm the ship yard owner informed Kistel that “Rail road” was broken and will not be repaired in the near future.

This put a damper on the previous day’s efforts and overall plans. Having the vessel out of the water would have greatly simplified the artificial reef preparations. Since there is no other facility nearby that is capable of removing the Tuff-E-From the water it appears all our preparations will have to be preformed while the vessel is in the river.

Please stay tuned and consider making a donation to our organization to support this project and others like it.

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