Residents may have noticed the dredging currently underway in Bathurst Basin (image right). Dredging operations are in addition to regular scouring work. Both are required to keep all areas of the harbour navigable. In dredging, a channel is dug on the floor of the harbour to allow silt to gather. This silt is then pumped into the New Cut and removed by the tide (image left).
The harbour authorities also undertake regular scouring operations, allowing water to flow out of the harbour taking some silt with it. Prior to a scour it may be necessary to increase the water level in the harbour by 0.20 to 0.25 metres. During the five-hour period from the start of each scour the water level in the floating harbour can be reduced by as much as 0.5 metres. Look out for stronger currents through narrow bridges – especially Prince Street Bridge – during scours.
The next scouring is scheduled for 12.15pm on Wednesday 20th March.