|San Remo Beach (north end of Holloways Beach) chewed up by trade winds, Dec 2014|
|Holloways Beach in 2009|
- Trucks run along the intertidal part of the beach so do not damage any private or public property whereas a pipeline that is installed for up to six months needs to be placed above the tidal zone.
- Trucks can place sand anywhere on the beach whereas pipelines are less flexible in this regard;
- If the sand is dirty, some of the dirt can be removed when the sand is loaded into truck whereas pumped sand includes the dirt (silt), however the silt is usually washed out at the receiving end leaving the beach clean but creating a turbidity plume in coastal waters which is undesirable; and
- In areas where the beach is narrow and the watertable is high, it might be difficult to get the pumped sand to stay on the beach rather than being washed into the sea by the stream of water that moves the sand.
The response of the operator was that trucking sand had been selected for environmental reasons. In all approximately 14 000 cubic metres of sand were moved up to a distance of 2 km.
|Truck hauling sand along the beach|
|End loader back blading the beach (dragging the blade) to flatten the beach for the trucks|
|Later in the afternoon, the tide came in and washed over the track|
|Dredge in mouth of Richters Creek|
|Bunded area/sediment pond with excavator for retrieving sand from the end of the pipeline|
|Stockpile of gray sand - see colour of sand on adjacent beach|
|Sediment captured within bunded area, went hard with time and |
the area was buried in sand when the site was cleaned up.
So was the trucking of sand successful? I think so. The beach has maintained its position for six years. Without the sand, it is likely that the seawall constructed to protect homes in Hibiscus Lane would have been exposed and wave action and currents would have changed to make Holloways Beach hostile to natural beach maintenance processes.
The downside of restoring Holloways Beach with sand was the removal of sand from the mouth of Richters Creek. A large sand spit had formed a hundred metres out from the mouth and possibly was on the verge of becoming a vegetated sand ridge. Removal of sand from the mouth of the creek lead to the collapse of this sand spit. Only six years later is the spit beginning to reform. Sometimes I wonder if the spit building up at the mouth of Richters Creek would have caused the Holloways Beach to prograde as the spit changed the shape of the coast. As waves crash directly into the sand spit there is no long shore drift and this area of beach becomes a natural sand trap.
|The sand spit that was lost due to the dredging, Holloways Beach in background|