Dredge Currituck Completes Ocean City Inlet Dredging

The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers’ hopper dredge Currituck just completed maintenance dredging work in Ocean City Inlet in Maryland to remove built up sediment in the channel and improve navigation.

Currituck depositing dredged material offshore of Assateague Island (Chris Gardner/USACE photo)

The work was part of the Army Corps, Baltimore District’s regular operation and maintenance efforts associated with the channel to ensure safe navigation for both commercial and recreational boaters who frequent the channel.

Dredge Currituck arrived in Ocean City May 8, and worked 24-hour operations for 5 days, completing 10-days’ worth of dredging during their time in the area. Dredging was focused on shoaling hot spots within the channel, including between buoys 11 and 12 and buoys 8 and 10.

The vessel placed the dredged material south of the inlet, just offshore of Assateague Island. Placing it there mitigates erosion and impacts to natural sediment transport caused by the Ocean City Inlet and its jetties.

Dredge CURRITUCK is a special purpose dredge based out of the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, Wilmington District, that primarily works in the shallow-draft ocean bar channels along the Atlantic coast.

The next Ocean City Inlet dredging is tentatively scheduled for later this summer.

The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers is also assessing long-term solutions to address chronic shoaling in the inlet in partnership with the state of Maryland and Worcester County.

That study effort is ongoing and the tentative plan going forward is still to make a recommendation by fall 2020; complete the environmental assessment and design by spring 2021; and be ready to start construction in late 2021.