Nfld. & Labrador

Hefty repair bill expected for boats, breakwater damaged by blizzard in C.B.S.

A breakwater outside the Royal Newfoundland Yacht Club was breached by waves during last week's blizzard, and could cost hundreds of thousands of dollars to repair.

Repairs could cost well over hundreds of thousands of dollars, says yacht club commodore

Larry LeDrew, commodore of the Royal Newfoundland Yacht Club, says damage to the wharf will cost hundreds of thousands of dollars to fix. (Julie Skinner/CBC)

A breakwater has been breached and boats have been damaged at the Royal Newfoundland Yacht Club in Conception Bay South, Commodore Larry LeDrew said.

The damage comes from large waves caused by Friday's blizzard, the strength of which plunged parts of Newfoundland's Northeast Avalon Peninsula into ongoing states of emergency.

"This is unprecedented," said LeDrew.

The yacht club, which was incorporated in 1964, has had its breakwater breached only twice before. The breakwater, a barrier built to protect the wharf from powerful waves, is built entirely of natural stone. LeDrew said he expects repairs to cost hundreds of thousands of dollars.

"A large section, probably about 300-plus metres long, [was] completely breached and that allowed the waves and the storm surge to come right in and impact our wharf,"  he said. 

"One of our main wharfs is pretty well destroyed."

The town of Conception Bay South released a statement on Thursday saying emergency repairs will begin on Friday.

"This work will involve numerous large excavators and a water craft. Given the risk to public safety, and due to concerns regarding future property and infrastructure damage, emergency repair efforts will be ongoing 24 hours a day, until the emergency repairs are completed," the town said.

The public is not permitted to access the area due to safety risks while repair is ongoing.

Boats also damaged

These are some of the boats found damaged in the wake of Friday's blizzard. (Julie Skinner/CBC)

Four boats were damaged during the blizzard.

"We have to move the boats that are stored down near the water now. [They] have to be moved so that we don't incur further damage," he said.

The breakwater is the responsibility of the Town of Conception Bay South, but the wharf belongs to the yacht club and is uninsured. 

This section of the breakwater in Conception Bay South was breached. (Julie Skinner/CBC)

"Obviously we'll all be looking at what's available from disaster relief funding, since this is a disaster that's unprecedented here in this area," he said. 

"The boats themselves would be insured by the individual boat owners. But as far as our wharfage, there's no storm surge insurance. It's going to be a huge job."

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