Rust Never Sleeps

Wood doesn’t rust so it’s an excellent material for ocean piers. But unless forests are amply stocked with the right sort of trees concrete is cheaper in the short run. Sun, waves, salt and age cause concrete to crack, exposing the steel reinforcing bars (rebar) within the concrete. Without rebar concrete is too weak to hold any but trivial loads. The salt water and air penetrate the cracks and go to work 24/7, eating up the rebar which speeds the concrete deterioration, exposing more rebar to the elements and the cycle continues.

The red circles show free standing rebar which was once encased in concrete. I’m sure they’ll rebuild the pier before it is in danger of collapse, after all it’s the only place within 20 miles that large fishing boats can unload.

When I first arrived in Hua Hin I wondered why this pier was a mix of wooden and concrete pilings. Suspected the concrete was a retrofit, perhaps to handle trucks larger than it was designed for.

I’m no engineer but I’ve always thought that support legs worked better when they touched the ground.

Photos were shot during one of the lowest tides of the year. I usually check the tide table before going to the beach. Outgoing tide means there will be hard damp sand to walk on while staying out of the waves. At high tide the water comes up to the seawall in some places. I’d noticed that an upcoming tide was one of the lowest of the year, seemed like a good photo opportunity.


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