Lighthouse ever closer to toppling

The three-metre cylindrical upper section of the lighthouse has been removed and the eight-metre lower section is now precariously close to the edge of the cliff face Photo: Josh Pretorius

THE final fall of the Richards Bay Lighthouse into the ocean below is surely a mere surge storm or two away.

An inspection of the site at Mzingazi on Tuesday revealed further erosion has taken place – a combination of rain water above and wave erosion at the toe of the dune face.

In December, the base of the lighthouse stood five metres from the edge; since then, another two metres have eroded.

Environmentalists Lisa Guastella and Alan Smith inspected the terrain on Tuesday, documenting the further rate of erosion
Photo: Dave Savides

ALSO READ: Time running out before lighthouse plunges into the sea

When it was commissioned in 1979, the lighthouse – which has a range of 25 sea miles – stood 300 metres from the ocean.

Alan Smith of the School of Geological Sciences Department at UKZN and Lisa Guastella of the Oceanography Department at UCT, who both inspected the site on Tuesday, reiterated that the coastal erosion has been ongoing for two decades and would continue – making the fall of the lighthouse inevitable.

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Dave Savides
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