There's a growing concern in Port au Choix about the safety of the government wharf, and some local fishermen don't believe it's safe.

The wharf was built in 1976, and those who use it to dock their boats say it's beginning to show its age.

Port au Choix fisherman Dwight Spence

Long-time Port au Choix fisherman Dwight Spence says they've been promised a replacement wharf for years, but he says it has never happened. (CBC)

Long-time fishermen Dwight Spence said the structure is slanting to the left, and although concrete has been added, it hasn't made any difference.

"Well the wharf is not safe you know, people shouldn't be on the wharf," said Spence.

"The wharf has been settling for the last fifteen years. They already put a foot of cement on one corner, and now they are up to the guard rail with cement." 

Spence has been fishing for almost 50 years, and said he's heard the promises of a new wharf for more than a decade.  

"Been promised to us, [they] told us we were first on the list. We are trying to get the wharf built for easterly wind. You can see here, you can see out through this harbour. We got no shelter for easterly winds."

In the past few weeks, small parts of the wharf have washed away, and according to Spence, it makes it tricky to get a boat to stay.  

Dwight Spence kicks the wharf

Built in the mid-1970s, the government wharf is slanting to the left. According to Dwight Spence, concrete has been added to straighten the structure, but it hasn't helped. (CBC)

"You wouldn't be able to tie, because you know, [you'd] tear the guard rail off the wharf."

Several years ago, $250,000 was spent to build a slipway. But Spence said the work wasn't finished.

Meanwhile, the federal Department of Fisheries said the wharf is not considered to be an immediate safety risk.

A spokesperson said they are aware of problem areas, and some repairs will be made next year as part of an annual maintenance program.