A Gambier Island company has helped remove the Styrofoam-and-cement docks that were placed on Crown land on Anvil Island without permission from the province.
Tom Stenner of Dolphin Marine Services said his crew helped with the cleanup after being contacted by the owner of the docks.
“We’ve towed the stuff away from Anvil and contained it on our grounds,” Stenner said. “We’re going to disassemble everything and take it in for scrap.”
Stenner said the cleanup included the debris on Anvil Island and some of the material that was floating in Howe Sound.
“We grabbed some of it — everything that was sort of in our path,” he said, adding that about 31 boathouses were recovered.
Once it’s broken down to a transportable state, the material will be barged from the company’s site at Annie’s Bay to a scrap facility on the Fraser River, he said.
The province launched an investigation into the derelict docks after several of them broke up in heavy storms early last month and spread debris across a large section of Howe Sound. They had originally been purchased for a nominal fee from Thunderbird Marina in West Vancouver and towed to the west side of Anvil Island.
On Dec. 19, Transport Canada said it was not taking action on the marine debris because it did not pose a threat to navigation.
“At this point they don’t consider it a navigation issue,” a spokeswoman said.
Squamish boater John Buchanan, who first reported the marine debris, said he identified 12 large dock sections floating in Howe Sound and provincial officials passed on the locations to the owner of the docks.
Buchanan said he had to give the owner credit for acting on the information.
“I have seen his boat out there, loaded with Styrofoam,” he said.
The debris was scattered from the west side of Anvil Island to Lions Bay and almost as far north as Squamish, he added.