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WA Crews Collect Debris From Coastal Beaches

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A man walks down a street through debris in Minamisanriku, Miyagi prefecture on March 18, 2011. (credit: TORU YAMANAKA/AFP/Getty Images)

A man walks down a street through debris in Minamisanriku, Miyagi prefecture on March 18, 2011. (credit: TORU YAMANAKA/AFP/Getty Images)

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OLYMPIA, Wash. (AP) — Washington Conservation Corps crews dispatched to clean up marine debris on southwest Washington coastal beaches have collected enough garbage to fill the beds of 70 pickup trucks.

The state Ecology Department sent out three six-member crews this week due to the increasing amount of debris showing up on the coast. The crews covered 57 miles of beaches from Cape Disappointment north to Moclips. Ecology says the haul was mostly plastic foam products but the workers also found refrigerators, large crates and containers, buoys, ropes and household garbage.

The department says it’s difficult to say how much of the debris is related to the 2011 Japanese tsunami.

Crew supervisor Shawn Zaniewski says crews did find some large items with Japanese symbols, as well as items with Chinese and other Asian writing.

(© Copyright 2012 The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)

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