DENR On Hurricane Damage To Shipwreck Site

September 25, 2019

The Department of Environment and Natural Resources [DENR] is currently assessing damage caused by the passage of Hurricane Humberto to the site of the shipwreck of the Montana.

A Government spokesperson said, “The Department of Environment and Natural Resources [DENR] is aware of significant damage to the side paddle steamer and blockade runner shipwreck the Montana [1863] following Hurricane Humberto.

“The full extent of the damage has not yet been fully assessed, however monitoring of the area is ongoing and there will be an extensive assessment of the site that will be shared with the public in due course.”

Custodian Of Historic Wrecks Phillipe Rouja said, “The Montana has had extensive and incredibly detailed high-resolution imagery data sets produced of the site prior to Hurricane Humberto.

“I, along with the marine conservation section at the Department of Environment and Natural Resources will be working in partnership with Professor Falko J Kuester’s team at University of California San Diego’s Virtual Engineering lab [the lead international partner in this digitization effort], and local dive partners to document the site for impacts to both its human and natural heritage, post Hurricane Humberto.”

The spokesperson said, “The public is reminded that under the Historic Wrecks Act 2001, it is illegal to interfere with or remove anything from an historic shipwreck without a licence.

“The Montana is more than 150 years old, and is home to an extensive and rich coral community. The Montana has also been heralded as an iconic and internationally renowned shipwreck site that is a significant part of Bermuda’s maritime cultural heritage.

“The site is an extremely popular recreational area with daily visits from tour boats and dive operators throughout the high tourist season with five visits per day by commercial boats. Thousands of people have visited the site and millions have seen it online and through multiple international documentaries.

“The Montana is one of two shipwrecks at the western blue cut site – the other is the Constellation 1943. This unique assemblage with wrecks one on top of the other was the inspiration for Peter Benchley’s book and film, The Deep.

“3D shipwreck models can be viewed here.”

You can view our live updates on Hurricane Humberto and Tropical Storm Jerry here, all our coverage of Humberto here, our coverage of Jerry here, and all our coverage of the 2019 hurricane season here.

click here Bermuda Hurricane Humberto

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Category: All, Environment, News

Comments (2)

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  1. Triangle Drifter says:

    A shame to lose a bit of history but it is a natural progression of nature taking back what man has built.

    Visitors like a wreck with some history however they like an intact wreck even more. Good wrecks are thrown away, sunk in places nobody knows about. Whatever happened to the last two tugboats, Powerful & Faithful? Where are they? There is a piece of junk of a tugboat that has done nothing but generate bills sitting at Dockyard now. Sink it somewhere easily accessible. Where were the old ferries sunk? Humberto has provided a collection of boats that would make good dive sites for scuba & snorkel divers.

    We were once offered a P3 aircraft, free, to be used as a dive site. The Government of the day stupidly turned the USN offer down.

    The more dive sites the better.

  2. Real Deal says:

    damages? I would rather call it Hurricane adjustments To Shipwreck Site.