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        Operation Lighthouse Rescue | Moving the Gay Head Lighthouse

        Examine an engineering team’s plan to rescue the historic Gay Head Lighthouse on the island of Martha’s Vineyard before the structure falls into the sea, in this media gallery from NOVA: Operation Lighthouse Rescue. The lighthouse stands just 45 feet from the edge of an eroding bluff. To save the structure from imminent danger, engineers must move it further inland. They ultimately opt to build a railroad to do this. The team must remove dirt and clay covering its foundation; lift the lighthouse from its base and onto a set of steel tracks; and, after a 134-foot ride, lower the building onto a new footing. This resource is part of the NOVA Collection.

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        The Gay Head Lighthouse

        This video explains that erosion from wind and rain has put the lighthouse in danger.

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        Signs of Erosion by Gay Head Light

        This video explains just how close the community was to losing the lighthouse and introduces the plan to save it.

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        How to Move the Gay Head Lighthouse

        This video examines the risks and benefits of two options for relocating the lighthouse and then details the plan the engineering team will ultimately use to move the lighthouse further inland.

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