It will be at least one more night before anyone knows how long the No. 8 buoy will remain on the Hilton Head beach where it was deposited by Tropical Storm Irma in September.
A Coast Guard contractor on Monday morning began moving the big red buoy off the beach.
As onlookers watched, it was loaded onto a flat-bed truck, and then it was taken off the truck and put back on the beach.
Lt. J.B. Zorn, public affairs officer for the U.S. Coast Guard, Sector Charleston, said a meeting is scheduled Tuesday with the contractor and the Coast Guard’s Waterways Management Division to discuss what materials are needed to get the buoy excavated and moved to Charleston.
“The Coast Guard is actively working with one of our contractors to remove the buoy,” Zorn said. “Earlier today it didn’t go as planned, but we are working with the contractor to get it removed as soon as possible.”
Zorn would not provide the name of the contractor.
He said he did not know when the buoy would be taken off the beach.
The 13,000-pound buoy has become a popular place for photo ops for Coligny Beach visitors and even served as the backdrop for a wedding.
Before the storm, the buoy had been located eight miles offshore marking the entrance to the Port Royal Sound for ships.
The buoy was expected to be excavated on Monday and loaded onto a truck to be taken to Charleston.
Lisa Wilson: 843-706-8103
Delayna Earley: 843-706-8151