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  1. ITV Report

Huge washed up pipelines create new seaside attraction

  • Click to watch a report by ITV News Anglia's Graham Stothard

Massive pipes up to a quarter of a mile long have been washed up on beaches near Great Yarmouth in Norfolk creating a new draw for tourists.

The plastic pipelines are between 600 and 1,500 feet long and came loose while being transported at sea to Africa.

Four of the pipes have washed ashore at Winterton, Sea Palling and Eccles on the Norfolk coast between Great Yarmouth and Cromer.

Eight more of the pipelines are still at sea.

Coastguards have issued a safety warning about going too close to the pipes.

"We have received several 999 calls regarding the pipes and sent teams to the area after reports were received that children were playing on or inside the pipes.

"We would like to issue a safety message to those in vicinity to keep at a safe distance until the salvage operation is complete."

– Jordan Grebby, Senior Maritime Operations Officer for UK Coastguard
The massive pipes have become a tourist attraction although walking on them is not recommended by the authorities.

Coastguards are monitoring the incident involving the large bore pipes on the East Anglian coast.

Dutch Marine BV supported by Marine Towing Services are working to remove the four pipes which have beached.

The Maritime and Coastguard Agency (MCA) says it is working with industry, Local Government, Environmental Regulators and port authorities in Norfolk and Suffolk to resolve the matter as safely and as quickly as possible.

A recovery operation is underway to tow the pipes back out to sea but it may take several weeks.

The pipes are nearly seven feet in diameter and brand new.

They are destined for a large project in Algeria in north Africa.

"Other than their physical presence they pose no other danger of, or potential for pollution.

"The remaining eight pipes are under control off shore."

– Maritime and Coastguard Agency
The pipes have been washed up at Winterton, Eccles and Sea Palling on the Norfolk coast north of Great Yarmouth.

The MCA says that once the four beached pipes are recovered the next phase of the recovery operation will begin.

It is intended that all pipes will be relocated to a single location offshore north of Lowestoft where they will await remedial work to prepare them for final tow back the manufacturers in Norway.

The recovery operation may take several weeks.

  • Click to watch a video of the huge pipelines that have been washed ashore