Surfrider volunteers and Oregon Parks and Recreation Department (OPRD) staff have lead two massive rapid response cleanups in March to help remove especially problematic debris from our beaches! Special shout-out to Newport Chapter Beach Cleanup Coordinator, Pete Snell, for taking a leadership role for Surfrider on both of these!
See below for pictures and details on the massive efforts to remove a ton (almost literally, 1830 lbs) of derelict fishing gear on the central coast and a huge dock with exposed foam up on the north coast. Efforts like this highlight the need for a dedicated Ocean Beach Fund to help OPRD cover the costs of protecting our beaches, learn more about how you can help Surfrider establish these increased protections for generations to come.
March 9th, 2017 Rapid Response
Derelict fishing gear north of Smelt Sands State Park, Yachats, OR
Cleanup Report from Pete Snell:
5 individuals (made up of both Beach Rangers: Ryan Parker and Doug S. and Oregon Surfrider staff: Ryan Cruse and Charlie Plybon and myself) Cut up a buffer used on the bottom of dragger nets to prevent tearing of the net and cached the net above the high tide line for later pickup. Going in on foot we used long rope cutting knives supplied by State Parks to cut up the mass. Small pelagic barnacles present so the gear had been out at sea for a little bit. There had been some speculation that it may have come down from Alaska where draggers are used. The first truckload State Parks Pulled out weighed 580 lbs, the second truckload weighed 1250 lbs. 1830 lbs total!
Another unfortunate find just a couple miles north - a mass of nets with two deceased female northern fur seals that were entangled in the gear.
March 26, 2017 Rapid Response
Concrete and styrofoam dock on the Northern end of Cape Falcon Marine Reserve
Cleanup Report from Pete Snell:
13 volunteers, the cleanup was coordinated by OPRD The dock had washed up and down this beach a bit and broken the concrete off the bottom whilst shedding styrofoam along the cobble beach for over a mile. It was notable walking along the beach that you could find styro and chunks of the same concrete as the dock with styro attached all along so it looked like it had come up from the Southern end before getting flipped on its' top (luckily to stop the scraping and dislodging of more styro on the rocks). We removed approximately 300lbs of styro from the dock and then had to leave off due to high tides sending waves directly to the edge of the dock and beginning to put our safety at risk.
Also present were two chunks of fiberglass and plywood boat hull. OPRD stated that the boat hull was thought to have come from the Phillipines as they had been cutting it into pieces for removal for several months but had not been able to completely get it out. The section we removed weighed approximately 300 lbs as it was tough going for 4 men to move. The four of us then moved South half a mile or so on the beach to remove a small 40 lb rope wad and 3 full large Oregon Marine Debris Team Bags of misc rope and other debris weighing approximately 75 lbs. All told we removed at the least 715 lbs of marine debris!