By Josh Davis, Associate Editor
(May 3, 2018) An assessment of the Ocean Pines sanctuary crabbing pier “showed the structure is in dire need of replacement,” according to an inspection by Snow Hill firm J Stacey Hart and Associates.
General Manager John Bailey, reading for the report during a public meeting Saturday, said existing galvanized hardware had corroded to the breaking point.
“The ends of the bolts have mushroomed such that you could not wrench them off and would probably require torching or cutting to disconnect for replacement,” he said.
Some tire floats were missing and others were disconnected because of the broken hardware, Bailey said. He said almost all floats in the Pines were “composed of tires filled with foam.”
“Quite frankly, that’s news to me – I’m used to dealing with actual floats that are designed for that purpose,” Bailey said.
Based on the inspection, the recommendation was to replace the structure in the same footprint and, because of safety concerns, to close the existing floating pier until that could be done.
Bailey said he could develop a scope of work and issue a request for bids, if the board directed.
No directors commented during the meeting, but Slobodan Trendic on Monday said an approved March 29 motion was sufficient to trigger the bid release.
“My personal view is that the inspection report provided the information the general manager needed in order to proceed with the next step,” he said.
According to Trendic, the motion called for an independent inspection of the fishing pier and stated, “If determined desirable, issue a request for proposals for its replacement if the fishing pier is found unsafe for usage and the total replacement is the most cost-effective long-term solution.”