State and federal agencies respond to boat beached at Long Beach

LONG BEACH – Local, state and federal agencies are responding to an approximately 20-foot boat that washed ashore today on the Long Beach Peninsula in Pacific County.

Possible Tsunami BoatAgencies are evaluating whether the boat was swept into the Pacific Ocean during the devastating tsunami that hit Japan on March 11, 2011. The boat is also being inspected for potential aquatic invasive species. No oil or hazardous materials have been associated with the boat.

Officials from the Washington Parks and Recreation Commission ask that the public stay clear of the boat so the state Department of Fish and Wildlife (DFW) can take precautionary actions including steam cleaning the vessel and removing potential invasive plant and animal species.

In addition to State Parks and DFW, agencies coordinating in the response are the Pacific County Department of Emergency Management; the Emergency Management Division of the Washington Military Department; and the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA). The multiple agency effort is focused on coordinating any actions that might be necessary to protect public health, safety and the environment, and on working with the Consulate-General of Japan in Seattle to find out if the boat came from Japan and to locate its owner.