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Silt stirs up trouble

28 Aug 2012

Silt stirs up trouble Image

Silting between Collins Landing and Yarra’s Edge has become so built up many boat operators now avoid the area.

The problem was highlighted earlier this year when a Port of Melbourne fire-fighting tugboat ran aground attempting to put out a boat fire.

The luxury Horizon 78 cruiser it was attempting to salvage was eventually engulfed in flames and sank.

Docklands charter boat operator Jeff Gordon said he had not taken his boats to Collins Landing since 2010.

“The last time I took a boat up I hit something underwater and bent a rudder, which cost a lot of money to repair,” Mr Gordon said.

Mr Gordon said at low tide the water in the area was only a metre deep due to the silt.

Docklands News understands other boat operators have noticed silting from Yarra’s Edge across to Collins Landing.

A Parks Victoria spokesperson said the silting within the Yarra was due to a natural build up of sand or other organic materials as a result of the river’s water flow.

“Parks Victoria has an ongoing monitoring program to survey the Yarra River to assist in maximising safe boating access to the river for recreational and commercial boat operators,” the spokesperson said.

A Parks Victoria survey of large sections of the Yarra and Maribyrnong Rivers started at the end of August.

The spokesperson said the survey, which included Yarra’s Edge and Collins Landing, would inform the development of a long-term sustainable dredging strategy for both rivers.

“If dredging is required, Parks Victoria will be involved. However, it may also involve other Government agencies or privately-leased marinas,” the spokesperson said.

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