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Subway Cars - DE

Subway Cars is a boat accessible salt water dive site, located in DE.

It’s a morning commute you’ll look forward to: Dive 44 subway cards 10 miles east of Rehoboth Beach.

In August 2001, New York City subway cars were slid off a barge into the Atlantic Ocean ten miles east of Rehoboth Beach, Delaware. This artificial reef was a success and resulted in a subsequent attempt at the Atlantic City Reef in April 2008 where 44 decommissioned stainless steel “Brightliner’ subway cars were placed in a circular pattern in the reef to provide Scuba Divers access. A total of 600 subway cars are scheduled to be sunk in the Atlantic to be used as artificial reefs, as the high cost of disposal of these cars otherwise due to the asbestos present in them would be prohibitive. The Asbestos has no apparent effect underwater, which is why for the New York MTA, this method of Subway car recycling is favorable. Before the rail cars were sunk, materials that were potentially dangerous, such as the oily and greasy undercarriages, were removed; doors and windows were taken off; and the interiors were steam cleaned.The ends of the cars were taken off to allow for fish and scuba divers easy access to enter at either end of these 60 foot cars. Brightliner subway cars can be reached by charters run by several local dive centers. Depths vary from 80feet up to 130ft, and visibility is often poor. Currently the subway cars are still undergoing their transformational process, inhabited only by black sea bass, tautog, and lobsters, but over time, coral anemones, barnacles and mussels will attach to the surface and attract hundreds of fishes. However as of July 2009 the New Jersey state announced that it would no longer sink New York’s old stainless steel subway cars into the Atlantic Reef, as reports that the stainless steel cars were deteriorating rapidly as compared to the steel ‘Red Bird’ cars which are still intact. Divers are advised to take care while penetrating these wrecks. So the next time your in Atlantic City, why not take the underwater subway and remember to pack your scuba gear… if your longing to see these magnificent structures underwater better hurry, as there may not be much left of them over time.

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