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Hillsboro Inlet Lighthouse Sand Dredge Pompano Construction Methodology
The Hillsboro Inlet District (HID) operates a small 8-inch hydraulic cutterhead dredge (dredge)
to maintain the navigation channel and to bypass sand from the northern beaches (net longshore
sediment transport direction to the south). The “cutter” apparatus serves to loosen the material
and mix it with water to create the slurry that is then pumped through the discharge line. The
HID dredge is limited to pumping sediment and is not capable of digging through hardbottom.
The inlet has a weir system, which impounds sand from the longshore transport, and deposits the
sand for ease of dredging and to avoid filling the navigation channel. The dredge also removes
deposited sand from the navigation channel as well as the newly constructed “fan-shape” outer
channel, as needed. This dredging and sediment bypassing operation has been ongoing since the
inlet was constructed in 1964. In accordance with the approved inlet management plan, the inlet
is required to bypass approximately 100,000 cubic yards per year.
The dredge is operated by the HID, and dredging normally occurs during regular business hours
(daylight hours), Monday through Friday.
The HID conducts sounding surveys regularly to determine a need for maintenance
dredging, or after major storm events that deposit sand in the weir impoundment area.
Once the need for dredging has been established, the dredge and floating pipeline will be
maneuvered into place.
The HID will confirm with turtle monitoring personnel (during turtle nesting season) in
Pompano Beach if nesting activities have occurred the previous night prior to dredging.
The dredge will be positioned with spuds and swing anchors deployed.
The floating pipeline will be positioned and connected to submerged pipeline, which
extends across the channel and piped to the nearshore area of Pompano Beach,
immediately downdrift of the Inlet.