The Maritime and Coastguard Agency says eight giant pipes which were floating in the sea are now under control. Four others beached along the Norfolk coast
Giant pipes, which came loose while being towed by a tug off the East Anglian coast, have washed ashore on beaches in Norfolk.
Four bore pipes have beached at Eccles on Sea, Sea Palling and Winterton (Horsey).
The Maritime and Coastguard Agency (MCA) says eight others are now under control offshore, and stress that “other than their physical presence they pose no other danger of, or potential for pollution”.
The giant pipes are brand new and were manufactured by Pipelife Norge AS in Norway.
They were destined for a project in Algeria in north Africa.
The MCA said it was monitoring the incident.
DutchMarine BV supported by Marine Towing Services are working to remove the four beached pipes.
It is believed that all pipes will be relocated to a single location offshore north of Lowestoft where they will await remedial work to prepare them for final tow back the manufacturers in Norway.
This process is expected to take several weeks.
The pipes have already been secured by vessels at sea or have been anchored off the coast of Norfolk, where they are being monitored by guard ships.
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The MCA said the circumstances surrounding the parting of the pipes from their tow is subject to further investigation
All the pipes are 2.4-metres in diametre.
The pipe at Sea Palling is 480 meters long; the one on the beach at Winterton/Horsey is more than 200 metres long and the two giant pipes beached at Eccles on Sea are about 200 metres long.
A senior maritime operations officer for UK Coastguard, Jordan Grebby, said: “We have received several 999 calls regarding the pipes and sent teams to the area after reports were received that children were playing on or inside the pipes.”
“We would like to issue a safety message to those in vicinity to keep at a safe distance until the salvage operation is complete,” stressed Grebby.
“If you see anyone in close proximity to the pipes we would ask that you call us on 999 and ask for the Coastguard, added the officer.