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Massive Ice Chunks Float Down Conn. River, Damage Docks

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SOUTH HADLEY, Mass. (WGGB) –Massive ice chunks floated down the Connecticut River, piling up right in front of the Redcliffe Canoe Club.

“I mean, it’s just devastating. To move cement and iron like it did, that’s quite a feat. I’ve got members that have been here 20 years that have never seen the river do what it did yesterday. It looked like Antarctica,” said the Club’s Commodore, John Wojinowski,

It still does.

The river froze in sub-zero temperatures two weeks ago, and started to thaw out once temps climbed into the 50’s.  It shows what kind of effects extreme weather can have.

Wojinowski says they’d leaned some of the river’s behavior. “We usually get hit every season with high waters, and we’re used to pulling the docks out, we always pull them out the week after Columbus Day. Sometimes we don’t get them out early enough, and the docks get all torn up,”

They avoided that, but the ice presented them with another problem. “They smacked into the cement pile-ons we anchor to the docks and believe me, they’re anchored solid.”

Those pile-ons are how the docks get secured. “We were very optimistic with no damage to the docks this past fall, we were thinking, oh, this is good to go,” Wojinowski said.

It’s going to take a lot of work to rebuild them, and get ready for boating season in the spring. While repairs will be expensive they’re hoping to get some help from the newest member they voted in, who happens to work with cement.

It’s not clear exactly how much repairs will cost.

The ice has also ruined a couple of Mt. Holyoke docks.


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