Oregon is concerned enough about the approach of debris from last year’s Japanese tsunami that they’ve set up a hotline for folks to call to report… stuff that washes up on the beach. Like that giant chunk of dock that washed up on Agate Beach – plans call for Ballard Diving to break that up and take it away starting July 30. (Ballard salvaged the wreck of the Low Speed Chase from the Farallones)
Starting Friday Oregonians will be able to report flotsam coming ashore by called 211. The Oregon Office of Emergency Management has the job of going out and picking up the stuff – in order to keep beaches clean and prevent the introduction of invasive species.
Lest we forget what to look for, they’ve published “wallet cards” detailing what to look for:
This is from www.oregon.gov:
Live at the coast? Just visiting? You can help keep the beach clean by removing human-made debris that washes up. Everyone is talking about debris from the tsunami that struck Japan in 2011, and we will see some of those objects here (derelict dock info), but the truth is debris lands on our shores all year long. No matter where it came from, you have a chance to protect Oregon’s beaches.
What can you do to help? Depends on what you find:
Litter and other typical marine debris.
Examples: Plastic bottles, aluminum cans, buoys, Styrofoam.
If practical, we encourage you to remove small debris and recycle as much of it as possible. You can get an official beach cleanup bag from any coastal state park office. If you can’t remove the debris from the beach by hand, please move it far enough away from the water so it doesn’t wash back out at high tide. If you see a significant amount of debris, or has living organisms on it, or is too large to move by hand, report it by email with the date, location and photos to firstname.lastname@example.org. If the debris has organisms growing on it, throw it away in a garbage can or landfill, or move it above the high tide line and report it.
Derelict vessel or other large debris item.
Examples: Adrift fishing boat, shipping containers.
Call 911 in an emergency. If the debris is a hazard to navigation, call 211 and you will be connected with the US Coast Guard. Do not attempt to move or remove vessels.
Mementos or possessions.
Examples: Items with unique identifiers, names, or markings.
If an item can 1) be traced back to an individual or group and 2) has personal or monetary value, call 211 to report it or send an email at email@example.com so we can make appropriate arrangements for return of items to Japan.
Potential hazardous materials.
Examples: Oil or chemical drums, gas cans, propane tanks.
Call 211 and you will be connected to the US Coast Guard’s National Response Center. Report as much information as possible. Do not touch the item or attempt to move it.
There are dozens of disposal stations on the coast ready to accept your bagged tsunami debris. If you see debris larger than what you can put in a bag—tires, refrigerators, and so on—don’t bring it to the disposal station. Report its location by calling 211.