A city staff warning that visitors to White Rock Pier risk “severe personal injury” is overstated

Pier counsel deserves a rethink


Re: White Rock feels pier pressure, Sept. 22.

Something is seriously wrong here.


Re: White Rock feels pier pressure, Sept. 22.

Something is seriously wrong here.

I’ve looked into this a little deeper and I now have more facts to base my comments and opinion upon.

There are 14 light posts on the pier. They are constructed of painted iron or steel, and are showing varying degrees of deterioration, with the damage predominately near the base. The posts furthest out are substantially worse than the ones close to shore. The other post and the arch associated with each light standard are unpainted galvanized steel and were added relatively recently – they are in excellent condition.

A few minutes on the Internet determined that commercial grade 16-foot lamp posts with lights are available in a range of materials, styles, and colours, for between $700 and $2,000 for the very fanciest.

For the harsh marine environment at the pier, fibreglass and powder-coated aluminum are available and probably the best choice.

What would it take to replace them, labour-wise?

Turn off the power, disconnect three wires, remove four lag bolts, remove the upper strap and remove the old light post. Installation would be reverse procedure.

I estimate it could be easily done in four man-hours each. Two guys with the proper equipment and skill should be able to change all 14 in less than four days.

So how much should this job cost?  Let’s say we buy 14 of the more expensive lamps at $1,500 each – that’s $21,000. And these guys replacing them – assuming the city workers are too busy – they get paid $80 an hour each. That should be less than $5,000. Let’s be generous and throw in 20 per cent for miscellaneous; you should be able to complete whole job quickly for around $30K or less, using superior materials.

White Rock taxpayers, demand to know why this could possibly cost over $400,000.

On a related point, I just came from the pier this morning, where winds were blowing at 80 km/h. I was not alone; dozens of others were traversing the pier for their morning walk. If there was a risk of  “severe personal injury to those visiting White Rock Pier,” would the city allow the pier to remain open? I don’t think so.

This is nothing more than scaremongering to oversell an inflated and possibly unnecessary expenditure.

What are some other less expensive solutions?

First, people enjoyed the pier for decades without lights; they are not essential. The imagined electrocution hazard could be eliminated simply by disconnecting the power supply – a flick of a switch.

Although the danger of a lamp standard toppling and injuring someone is probably less likely than getting hit by a re-entering satellite, that risk could be eliminated by attaching a third safety attachment to each unit, or they could be simply removed. Total cost $1,000-3,000.

Geo Heath, Surrey

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Surrey council sets new rules for Good Citizen of the Year award

Candidates have more hurdles to jump before getting nominated for the prestigious local title

Lottery win ‘doesn’t feel real’ for White Rock man

$75,000 BC/49 ticket purchased at Semiahmoo Shopping Centre

EXPLORE SURREY: Tee up some adventures in the city

Also: A walk through Surrey’s public art collection

In honour of player killed in crash, Surrey soccer team becomes BB5 United

Brandon Bassi died a few months before CCB won the national title last fall

Canucks ride momentum into NHL playoff series against defending Stanley Cup champs

PREVIEW: Vancouver opens against St. Louis on Wednesday

Man, 54, charged in connection with fatal attack of Red Deer doctor

Doctor was killed in his walk-in clinic on Monday

One dead as fish boat sinks off southern Vancouver Island

Shawnigan Lake-registered Arctic Fox II went down off Cape Flattery, west of Victoria

42 more people test positive for COVID-19 in B.C.

The province has recorded no new deaths in recent days

Joe Biden selects California Sen. Kamala Harris as running mate

Harris and Biden plan to deliver remarks Wednesday in Wilmington

Displaced tenant ‘heartbroken’ to find Langley City condo robbed after fire

Wedding rings of Michelle Buchan’s have since been recovered, but much is still missing

‘Agitated’ man pulls out knife on 3 people in Abbotsford

Witnesses sought for incident on Monday night near city hall

FoodMesh taking its emergency food recovery project nationwide

Pilot project in Chilliwack helped show that food surpluses could be diverted to charities in need

Most Read