Restoration complete after French military vessel damages coral - KUAM.com-KUAM News: On Air. Online. On Demand.

Restoration complete after French military vessel damages coral reef

Posted: Updated:

Reef restoration efforts have finally been completed after a French military vessel ran aground in May. A 21-meter "grounding scar" on the coral reef...that's what was left after a military vessel ran aground near Reserve Craft Beach in Piti earlier this year.

The accident happened during a joint multinational exercise between US and French forces.

Hours after the incident took place, Joint Region Marianas chief of staff Captain Jeff Grimes said an initial assessment revealed limited information about the extent of the damage. "There were no personnel injuries, and there was no release of petroleum or other hazardous constituents to the environment," he explained.

Now it's known that the grounding caused major damage to the coral reef. Guam Environmental Protection Agency spokesperson Nick Lee said, "Some of the displaced coral were from the size of your fist, to the size of boulders with 3- or - foot radius."

While some coral were simply displaced, others died as a result of the accident. "So the team did what they could to salvage whatever they could, and the coral that was dead, was relocated to another part of the ocean," said Lee.

Restoration efforts were completed in June in collaboration with the Navy, Joint Region Marianas, Guam EPA, the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Guam Coastal Management Program, the Department of Agriculture, the Port Authority of Guam and Guam Customs and Quarantine.

Divers removed debris including dead coral and also secured coral using materials including rebar and cement. "And that's really so they don't become displaced in a future storm surge or typhoon and cause potentially more damage as it serves as an underwater projectile essentially," he said.

Lee could not provide a cost-estimate for the restoration effort, but noted many of the services and utilized equipment were provided in-kind and at the discretion of each agency.

  • NEWS HEADLINESMore>>

  • Motorcyclist hurt in Route 15 crash

    Motorcyclist hurt in Route 15 crash

    One man was sent to the hospital in serious condition after a motorcycle crash on Route 15 Tuesday afternoon. According to police spokesman AJ Balajadia, the crash happened around 5:40PM.

    More >>

    One man was sent to the hospital in serious condition after a motorcycle crash on Route 15 Tuesday afternoon. According to police spokesman AJ Balajadia, the crash happened around 5:40PM.

    More >>
  • Nationwide Emergency Alert System test Thursday

    Nationwide Emergency Alert System test Thursday

    The Federal Emergency Management Agency in collaboration with the Federal Communications Commission will be conducting a nationwide Emergency Alert System test on Thursday, September 28 at 4:20am, Guam time. Residents should expect to receive both audio and on-screen messages in both English and Spanish.

    More >>

    The Federal Emergency Management Agency in collaboration with the Federal Communications Commission will be conducting a nationwide Emergency Alert System test on Thursday, September 28 at 4:20am, Guam time. Residents should expect to receive both audio and on-screen messages in both English and Spanish.

    More >>
  • Woman jailed after gift card scheme

    Woman jailed after gift card scheme

    A gift card scheme sends one woman to jail. 24-year-old Joyce Merino was arrested and charged with aggregated theft of property as a second degree felony.

    More >>

    A gift card scheme sends one woman to jail. 24-year-old Joyce Merino was arrested and charged with aggregated theft of property as a second degree felony.

    More >>
Powered by Frankly