Two hundred and fifty tonne steel buoy runs aground after wild weather

By Jordan Bond

The buoy washed up on Ngamotu Beach this morning. Photo/Glenn Jeffrey
The buoy washed up on Ngamotu Beach this morning. Photo/Glenn Jeffrey

A New Plymouth beach has a new visitor as a result of last night's wild weather - a massive 250 tonne buoy.

The steel buoy - 250,000 kilograms - has run aground Ngamotu Beach after breaking its mooring out at sea after weather created chaos around the country last night.

The buoy is destined for Port Waikato and has been sitting around 800 metres offshore for five weeks.

Taranaki Regional Council harbourmaster Neil Armitage said he's not sure how it managed to end up beached.

"We don't quite know what's happened yet - obviously the mooring's failed, and there was a big anchor out there. Where it's failed is yet to be decided... We can't get guys in the water just yet - it's a bit too dangerous," Armitage said.

"There's nothing in it, no oil or any nasties. It's just sitting there basically like a big tin can really."

It's not going to be an easy task getting it back out to sea, he said.

"The options are to either run a ground tackle to put some tension on it and try to use the swell to move it off, or we could use a tug to put a line up or we could use that big offshore vessel to run its tow line to it.

"Once we put a line to it, we'll then tension it and use the next high water and swell to try and move it off. Put it this way - it got there, so we can move it back."

- NZ Herald

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