Sand sausages to goin favour of armouring

Sand sausages at Oamaru Harbour. Photo: Hamish MacLean
Sand sausages at Oamaru Harbour. Photo: Hamish MacLean
Oamaru's brief affair with sand sausages is coming to an end.

Waitaki Mayor Gary Kircher has called for the removal of the failed foreshore protection north of Holmes Wharf, a month after an Oamaru activist, Coast Care’s Lorraine Adams, called for the same.

In his report to council this month Mr Kircher wrote the sand sausages had come to an "early and messy end".

"The reactions from some members of the public have not been complimentary, as the sand sausages variously get described as a waste of ratepayers’ money, environmental pollution, and worse. It is time we got on and cleared them out of the way, and replaced them with tried and true rock armouring instead."

This week he said once staff had received the required consent the work would get under way.

Yesterday, Ms Adams called the move "brilliant".

"What a good idea," she said.

She also called last year for the sand sausages’ removal after their use at the beach was abandoned in favour of rock armouring.

The Otago Regional Council granted the council resource consent for the installation of the sand sausages as coastal erosion protection, despite Ms Adams’ protests.

But on July 7, 2017, with work under away, the council said an offshore "one-in-seven year storm event" on June 25 to 27 removed too much stone, gravel and sand from the beach for the sand sausages to be properly installed, and the plans were scuppered.

At this month’s council meeting, Cr Jan Wheeler said the council should give more consideration to "tried and true" options.

Cr Colin Wollstein asked if the council had any legal recourse, but was told the cost of pursuing legal options would not cover the losses.

Staff also said there were no definite plans for the baled-up material nearby at the creek.

hamish.maclean@odt.co.nz

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