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Grounded barge in English Bay will remain until at least Dec. 6, owner says

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Vancouver -

The barge that's been grounded at Sunset Beach since last week's historic storm will be staying there a little while longer.

Owner Sentry Marine had previously told CTV News the barge would be moved on Sunday, but the Richmond company now says it is waiting until the King Tide on Dec. 6 to attempt removal.

The barge has quickly become a piece of Vancouver lore, inspiring memes and parody social media accounts and attracting onlookers on a daily basis since it ran aground.

A tugboat was brought in to remove the barge on Nov. 16, but it wasn't strong enough to do the job.

Sentry Marine said the problem is that the tide had surged to around 14.8 feet when the barge was grounded. The next King Tide in Vancouver is expected at 8 a.m. on Dec. 6, according to the city, which has not provided an estimate for how high the water might get. 

As of Sunday, Fisheries and Oceans Canada predicted a high of 5 metres, or 16.4 feet, on Dec. 6. 

The highest recorded King Tide in Vancouver history was 5.57 metres, or 18.3 feet, in 1967, according to the city

The barge was one of nearly two dozen vessels that were set adrift by last week's storm, according to the Canadian Coast Guard. 

Transport Canada, which is the lead federal agency helping to co-ordinate the removal plan, says there is no threat of pollution from the barge, which is empty and had previously been used to carry wood chips.

"Once refloat has been successful and the barge stabilized, we will allow the barge to proceed for repairs, and we will follow up with the owner to ensure the vessel is fit for service," a Transport Canada spokesperson said in an email to CTV News last week.

With files from CTV News Vancouver's Andrew Weichel 

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