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Sanctuary applies for buoy permit to mark more shipwrecks

Submitted by on May 14, 2010 – 6:32 amNo Comment

The Thunder Bay National Marine Sanctuary is applying for a permit to deploy and recover mooring buoys to mark shipwreck archeological sites in Lake Huron.

The Sanctuary already uses about 20 buoys to mark shipwreck sites but has applied for a permit from the from the U.S. Army Corps Of Engineers to put up to 24 more in the waters offshore of Alcona, Alpena and Presque Isle counties.        

In addition to marking new sites for divers, Sanctuary Superintendent Jeff Gray said many of the shipwrecks are in shallower water, making them more accessible to kayakers and snorklers.  The buoys also act as a safe point for divers and dive boats.

The buoys need to be placed in the water at the beginning of each season and taken out at the end.  Gray said the process to initially install them is time consuming.  If the permit is approved within the next month or so he hopes to place 5-6 buoys before the end of the current season.

The City of Alpena and other municipalities in the region have provided the Sanctuary with letters of support for the permit process.