North Tyneside Council has confirmed it fully intends to recoup the costs of clearing up 70 metric tonnes of washed-up timber from its beaches following an incident in December.

The local authority sent out teams and equipment to recover the logs, scattered across Whitley Bay Beach, following a shipping incident on the morning of December 13, 2023.

The logs, which were onboard the shipping vessel ‘Scot Explorer’, had been en route to Dover from Scotland.

However, the ‘Explorer’ hit stormy weather off the coast of Blyth and lost 70 metric tonnes of timber overboard, soon after the local authority issued a warning via X, formally known as Twitter, to residents. The ‘Scot Explorer’ subsequently docked in Sunderland to secure its remaining cargo.

The logs were cleared soon after they came ashore and it has now been confirmed they have been disposed of at the behest of the cargo’s owner. North Tyneside Council is now in the process of pursuing reimbursement from the owner of the cargo.

Get more from The Northern Echo with a Premium Plus digital subscription from as little as only £1.50 a week. Click here.

Recommended reading:

The owner of the ‘Scot Explorer’, shipping firm Scotline, had previously stated the responsibility of for the clear-up and collection of the timber lay with the owners. The company nonetheless did go on to say it had assisted the local authority with a “quick recovery and disposal” of the timber.

Neither North Tyneside Council nor Scotline were in a position to divulge the owner of the timber. In addition, the cost of the clean-up could not be confirmed.

Whitley Bay councillor, John O’Shea said: “This incident happened before Christmas so clearly there was a need for the council to act quickly on this for the safety of the residents and naturally this would have incurred a cost. I am pleased the council is acting prudently in asking for a contribution from the owner of the cargo.”