TNPA assembles temporary beacon after lighthouse demolition

The original Richards Bay lighthouse during demolition.

A temporary structure to guide vessels navigating the surrounding waters has been erected following the demolition of the 39-year-old Richards Bay lighthouse, according to a statement released by the Transnet National Ports Authority (TNPA) today.

The newly raised steel structure was fabricated by a local company while the LED long range beacon was shipped from the United Kingdom.

This as the original lighthouse, commissioned in 1979, had come close to toppling into the sea due to severe coastal erosion.

TNPA Lighthouse and Navigational Services (LNS) executive manager, David Gordon, said that the South African Maritime Safety Authority had been informed of the demolition which was handled by Atomic Demolishers under the guidance of a structural engineer.

A wire fence was built around the structure in order to restrict access. TNPA said LNS was working with the City of Umhlathuze to put the necessary services in place for construction of a new lighthouse on a new site in Richards Bay.

While an environmental impact assessment still remains outstanding, construction of the new lighthouse is expected to begin later this year.

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