• 82°

Artificial reef program sinks vessel off Topsail

The N.C. Division of Marine Fisheries’ Artificial Reef Program, in partnership with the Brian Davis Artificial Reef Memorial, sank a 180-foot vessel on Friday, July 24 in Southern Onslow Bay.

The Brian Davis is a memorial vessel named in honor of a diver who lost his life in a diving accident several years ago. The Brian Davis is located at AR-368, which is about 15 miles from Topsail Inlet and 18 miles from Masonboro Inlet. This project was funded by donations from the diving community as well as Coastal Recreational Fishing License funds.

The memorial vessel is a 180-foot Iris class buoy tender originally commissioned by the US Coast Guard and named Salvia, according to a press release from NCDMF. The vessel was constructed in 1943 and began work in the Great Lakes as an icebreaker in 1944. The vessel served in Portsmouth, Virginia during World War II and was moved to Alabama after the war where she remained until decommissioned in 1991.

The tug was cleaned of environmental pollutants in accordance with Environmental Protection Agency, U.S. Coast Guard and U.S. Army Corps of Engineers regulations prior to reefing, stated the release. Its placement leaves a navigational clearance of approximately 20 feet. The division plans to sink some large reef balls and concrete pipe at the site later this fall.

GPS coordinates for AR-368 are: 34° 09.514’ N, 77° 25.782’ W.

The ship sinking project cost $268,000. The Davis Family, through fundraising, donated $65,000 towards the vessel. The remaining $203,000 was funded by a Coastal Recreational Fishing License grant.

“An artificial reef is a manmade underwater structure, typically built to promote marine life in areas with a generally featureless bottom. In North Carolina, they serve as crucial spawning and foraging habitat for many commercially and recreationally important fish species,” continued the release.

NCDMF maintains 68 artificial reefs located from estuarine waters to 38 miles from shore. They are situated so that they can be reached from every maintained inlet in the state.

For more information, about the program or the vessel sinking, contact Artificial Reef Program coordinator Jordan Byrum at 252-808-8036 or Jordan.Byrum@ncdenr.gov.

View video of the ship sinking here or below:

READ MORE IN OUR ON THE WATER SECTION HERE.

RECENT HEADLINES:

Seafood season: Fresh fish dishes for the family

Shoaling near Ocracoke forces reduction in Pamlico Sound ferry schedule

Lifestyles

The Little Free Pantry: Helping to fight hunger in Dare County

Currituck

Moyock residents share flooding concerns

News

Three dead, two missing after tubers go over North Carolina dam

News

Columbia officials issue reminder about what goes down drains

News

Veterans’ tax exemption expanded in bill clearing North Carolina House

News

Child of North Carolina police officer dies in shooting

Crime

North Carolina man faces multiple charges after hitting police cars, sparking chase

Currituck

Currituck approves 2021-22 budget, wild horse management agreement

Crime

Two Virginia men arrested after vehicle pursuit from Nags Head to Roanoke Island

Business

Donation supports this year’s Inshore Slam

News

North Carolina election bills unlikely to become laws after Senate votes

Crime

North Carolina man sentenced to over 28 years in prison for drug and firearm charges

News

Several speak out against mask requirements at Dare County Schools

News

Federal appeals court refuses to reinstate North Carolina abortion ban

Crime

North Carolina man accused of firing at police substation charged in deaths of family members

News

North Carolina tax revenue soars, $6.5 billion windfall predicted by mid-2023

Currituck

Currituck County wreck results in injuries

Crime

North Carolina man sentenced to 18 months in prison for firearm charge

Crime

North Carolina man already jailed for other offense charged in fatal crash

Crime

Man with guns in car on campus of UNC-Chapel Hill arrested

Crime

Virginia man arrested for drug charges after Kill Devil Hills traffic stop

Lifestyles

Outer Banks Community Foundation prepares for 2021 hurricane season, seeks donations

Crime

North Carolina man sentenced to over 17 years in prison for cocaine distribution

News

Bill expanding access to North Carolina government worker information clears Senate