14,000 tetrapods to protect Thiruvottriyur coast from coastal erosion

Tetrapods are four-legged structures made of concrete placed next to each other to act as flood-barriers
5000 tetrapods of various sizes have arrived at the coast
5000 tetrapods of various sizes have arrived at the coast

CHENNAI: In a bid to prevent coastal erosion and sea-water intrusion, about 14,000 tetrapods will be placed along the coast of Thiruvottriyur Kuppam, said fisheries department officials. Already 5000 tetrapods of various sizes have arrived at the coast.

This is part of the recently launched Rs 200 crore worth Tuna Fishing Harbour Project undertaken by the State Fisheries Department.

‘‘On the north side of the sea, the tetrapods will be placed for 510 metres long and on the south, it is for 849 metres long,’’ said a fisheries department official.

Tetrapods are four-legged structures made of concrete. The size and weight range from 2 to 10 tons. These are placed next to each other to act as flood barriers protecting the sealine from powerful waves that can cause destruction. As sea-erosion is a major threat at the moment, these structures play multiple roles in preventing erosion too.

‘‘When it floods, fishing villages around Kasimedu get affected. These concrete tetrapods may prevent powerful waves on the seaside and keep the waters calm even during storms. Fishermen can safely park their boats too and do trade also,’’ said the official.

As part of the fishing harbour project, which is going in a good pace,  hard rocks have been placed on the seaside too. ‘‘Once the hardrocks are placed, the tetrapods will be placed on the hard rocks for better grip. At the shore, 2 ton small pods will be placed and the 8 ton pods will be placed on the sea end,’’ added the official.

Fisheries Minister D Jayakumar had laid the foundation store for the harbour in September this year. While the fishing harbour project is expected to be completed by the middle of 2021, the tetrapods will be placed by mid-2020.  

The new harbour in Thiruvottriyur Kuppam will have facilities like boat parking area, jetties for high and low powered boats, area for selling fish, auction hall, dormitory, Ice plants to keep fish and also wastewater treatment plant.

About 20 fishing hamlets are expected to benefit from this harbour. The harbour will have welfare centre for men and women too.

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