The U.S. Coast Guard recovered a massive red buoy that had beached just east of Iron Pier Beach in Northville Wednesday afternoon.
The location of the buoy required the assistance of a Coast Guard Jayhawk helicopter to move the approximately 2,600-pound buoy from the shore to a trailer bed at the town beach.
A small crowd of onlookers gathered at Iron Pier around 1 p.m. to watch as a Coast Guard crew hoisted the buoy and lifted it from the beach, flying along the shoreline before lowering the device. Several members of the Coast Guard remained on land to guide the buoy onto a trailer.
The buoy washed up about a month ago and several Riverhead police officers at the scene said the department has received multiple calls about it.
Olivia Bulloss of Aquebogue discovered the buoy last month while walking along the beach with her golden doodle, Dublin. Her brother, Ed, had been visiting and they began contacting the Coast Guard, she said at the beach Wednesday.
“We’ve been following the buoy,” she said, as she taped its landing on her iPhone for her brother to see.
According to Coast Guard Petty Officer Hunter Medley, the red #8 buoy is normally stationed in Flanders Bay, just south of Simmons Point.
It’s known as a “nun” buoy due to its cylindrical shape and conical top, he said, adding that these types of assignments are not “super common.”
The buoy will be taken to the Coast Guard Aids to Navigation Team Moriches facility in Hampton Bays for repairs since it is used as a navigation unit for the Coast Guard on Long Island, Mr. Medley said.