Officials: Too early to tell if more tsunami debris washed up on coast

Officials: Too early to tell if more tsunami debris washed up on coast

NEWPORT, Ore. -- More and more photos are surfacing of what may be tsunami debris washing up along the Oregon coast.

Beachcombers have had their eyes peeled after a dock -- confirmed to be from the tsunami -- showed up unexpectedly last week near Newport.

According to officials, all of those photos from the beachcombers can't be definitively identified as coming the tsunami. However, some debris, such as the dock itself, were easy to verify because the markings on it. It had a placard and serial number, which were giveaways.

Some of the smaller items that have been photographed aren't so obvious.

One YouNews reporter shot a photo of the debris that washed up just north of Waldport. There's a plastic ring with some kind of a bottle and a Coca-Cola can. There was also a buoy that was found along the coast, too.

Last week, a research boat found a half-dozen floats or buoys in the ocean near the mouth of the Columbia River. Experts said it will take time and data collection before they know if this kind of debris is from the tsunami.

"For stuff like that -- that has a fingerprint on it -- that's pretty easy," said Chris Havel of the Oregon Parks Department. "Trash, other little stuff like that, you have to go by volume. Because we get that all the time, but if you suddenly get twice as much as you were getting before then and there's no reason for it.

Because of that, officials from the Oregon Parks Department and the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration want to hear from anyone who thinks they've spotted anything they think might be tsunami debris. There are a couple of ways to report that information. One is to email the NOAA at disasterdebris@noaa.gov. Another way is to download the Marine Debris Tracker app for your smart phone.