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Judi Lynn

(161,325 posts)
Wed May 29, 2024, 01:44 AM May 29

Oregon Officials Warn People Not To Touch Mystery Tar-Like Substance On West Coast Beaches

13 hours ago

The substance appears to be petroleum-based, but no one knows where it’s come from.

It was first spotted on May 19.

Image credit: Oregon Department of Environmental Quality

Visitors to the northern Oregon and southern Washington coastline are being told to avoid touching balls and patties of an oily, tar-like substance that’s been washing up on the shore and affecting wildlife.

The substance was first reported on May 19, and in the days that followed, was found along a roughly 240-kilometer (150-mile) stretch of coast from Long Beach, Washington, down to Waldport, Oregon, by a Unified Command set up to respond to the incident.

Wildlife has also been affected by the appearance of the tar-like substance, with multiple birds discovered coated in it. Whilst cleanup teams have been working to rescue contaminated animals, some common murres – a bird species that breeds along the West Coast – have been found dead.


What exactly they’ve been contaminated by is unclear. Both state and federal agencies have been testing the substance and have so far been able to determine that it’s petroleum-based.

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Oregon Officials Warn People Not To Touch Mystery Tar-Like Substance On West Coast Beaches (Original Post) Judi Lynn May 29 OP
Surprising they haven't posted what it is exactly. duncang May 29 #1
k riversedge May 29 #2


(2,117 posts)
1. Surprising they haven't posted what it is exactly.
Wed May 29, 2024, 02:34 AM
May 29

Seems like they should have had time for a full analysis of the tar. To me it should announced the make up of it. Does it have benzene or other dangerous chemicals? You lower the chance of someone touching it if they said what chemicals were in it. Also it may help to make people report it faster if they see some.

Main thing I believe in the right to know everything about any possible threat to health. It would also get people to motivate their officials. Seen too many times foot dragging has resulted in unnecessary exposure. Where I lived before this a local chemical company spewed out stuff all over the neighborhood. Black soot was all over. First response was go to these car washes for a free wash. Then weeks later it was yeah the stuff is bad for you. We aren’t going to tell you what it is though. But we took care of it. Houses within a few blocks companies turned up to wash the houses. But all that did was flush it to the ground.

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