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Crane not caving in to seaweed


GERCINE CARTER

Crane not caving in to seaweed

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THE CRANE HOTEL in St Philip has a major daily battle on its hands.

The staff at the luxury hotel and residences are fighting daily inflows of the troublesome sargassum seaweed in order to protect the pristine Crane Beach.

The hotel’s managing director Paul Doyle told

the DAILY NATION that he was determined not to allow the pesky dark-brown weed to overrun what has been rated as one of the ten most beautiful beaches in the world.

The hotelier said he was in the process of finalising a plan to secure a boom for seaweed, similar to the device used to clean up marine oil spills, which he believed would make a real difference.

Since the expansive Crane beach lies at the bottom of a 60-foot cliff, Doyle said there was no way to haul the collected deposits up to the level of the hotel for disposal.

Meanwhile, every day, between 4 p.m. and 6 p.m., the hotel’s employees spend hours gathering up the sargassum in wheelbarrows and redeposit it in an area of the beach where Doyle explained the tide sweeps it back into the sea and carries it further down the coast.

He explained the seaweed deposits first started to invade the beach about four years ago but the invasion only lasted about three or four weeks at that time. Then it was seasonal, only coming in the spring, but Doyle said this year the flow had not stopped since it first appeared last spring.

Two years ago he was forced to hire a Bobcat to work on the beach ten hours a day, every day, to clear the way for his guests to enjoy the beach.

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