Owner plans to raise, remove sunken barge

By Daniel Dunkle | Apr 29, 2019
Courtesy of: Cushing Harbormaster Austin Donaghy A barge has been abandoned for more than a year in Pleasant Point Harbor in Cushing. The owner now plans to remove it.

Cushing — The owner of a barge that has been abandoned for more than a year in Pleasant Point Harbor said he plans to pump it out, raise it and remove it from that location within the next three weeks.

Randy Martin of Cushing said he bought the wooden barge with the crane on it to do work building docks in the area. He said the barge likely dates back to the late 1970s and was built by Peter Kass out of South Bristol.

He said part of the reason he has not removed the vessel yet was that he was waiting for better weather.

It was reported at the annual town meeting in March that the barge had been stranded in the harbor for about 14 months, and residents voted to approve spending $12,000 from the Boat Excise Account to be used with matching funds from the state to remove the barge.

Harbormaster Austin Donaghy said the barge broke from its mooring during the night of a storm when no one was aboard. "It grounded out on Gay Island close to its current position. Mr. Martin pulled it off when weather permitted and moored it in its current location, where it sank shortly thereafter," he explained in an email.

The project is currently in a waiting period.

"As mentioned at the town meeting, John Noll of the Bureau of Parks and Lands wrote to Mr. Martin on March 13th, 2019, advising him under [state law], he has 60 days to remove the craft," Donaghy said. "Mr. Noll advised me that he received a response from Mr. Martin indicating intention to comply. He has until May 12th."

The barge stuck at Pleasant Point Harbor as seen at high tide. (Courtesy of: Cushing Harbormaster Austin Donaghy)
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