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(If you dare!)
A semi loaded with several tons of fish waste lost its load out the back as the truck started climbing Hatfield Drive above the Bayfront. Witnesses say the contract trucking company, OCA Transport, out of Fairview, OR, had just been loaded with tons of Hake fish heads and other fish waste bound for a land application as fertilizer near Siletz.
But it’s quite apparent that someone failed to properly secure the back doors of the truck (or the back locks), for as the truck powered up the very steep Hatfield Drive, the whole load shifted back and punched open the doors and spilled out fish waste all the way down the street.
Crews from Pacific Seafoods grabbed shovels and began refilling the totes back up with the waste. One by one they were slid down the hill to the waiting tongs of a forklift which then returned them to the fish plant.
Newport Firefighters hosed down the street while workers spread a dissolvent on the asphalt and scrubbed it with stiff-brush brooms. Next was a layer or salt to dry up the asphalt. By 4pm the street was pretty well cleaned up. However, a lingering smell may accompany the area for a few days.
Newport Police say it’s ultimately the responsibility of the truck driver to make sure his vehicle is safe to operate. In this case the trucker would be in line for a big ticket. However, police say since this is not the first time this has happened on the Bayfront they’re going to waive the ticket in favor of working with the fish processing plants on a better system for ensuring that before the trucks pull away, there is a final check or verification system that helps prevent such occurrences in the future. Police say the Newport Bayfront poses unique challenges due to clearances that make it difficult to get truck doors closed while also accommodating tourist traffic. Due to the tight confines of dock loading areas, trucks have to back in with their doors open. Likewise, when trucks pull out, they re-close the doors but only after the trucks are on the street where there’s more room to swing them shut. Again, traffic conditions can complicate the maneuver.
The driver of the truck was soon seen repositioning his rig to be reloaded for another attempt at delivering the waste to the farm near Siletz.
Here’s some video of the “event.”