Monday, June 5, 2017

LIFE ROLLS ON® amidst a boatload of storm debris.....

Dateline: Saturday, June 3, 2017 at Santa Monica Lifeguard Tower #28, just to the south of Ocean Park.  I arrived at around 8:30 a.m. and was surprised to see the charitable organization, LIFE ROLLS ON®, all set up on the beach adjacent to Tower #28 and it looked like it was a huge event that was organized.  Which it turned out to be.  LRO helps disabled athletes learn to surf and there were hundreds of volunteers in attendance as well.  Very impressive, indeed!

Here are the photos plus a video that I shot in the morning, as well as closer to 12 noon when I returned from a walk along the shoreline to Venice and back...

 *** Video Alert ! ***

LIFE ROLLS ON, Storm Debris & Surf: The Video

And below are a series of photos that show just how unsafe this stretch of beach is because of the enormous amount of debris at the tide line near the water's edge that remains uncollected by the City of Santa Monica. Driftwood of all sizes, and especially bamboo that is often sharp and can cause painful injuries to the feet.

Massive pieces of driftwood and debris litter the beach between the disabled athletes and the ocean...

I am assuming the LIFE ROLLS ON® paid money to the City of Santa Monica for a permit for this event.  You would think that LRO would get a safe and clean beach in return for said permit but you would be wrong.  Instead, LRO volunteers and the disabled athletes had to circumnavigate past all of this debris on the way to and from the ocean all day during this event which lasted into the afternoon.

This type of debris has plagued the beaches in Santa Monica, esp. south of the Santa Monica Pier for all of 2017 to date and the City continues to ignore it and simply does not either daily or regularly pick it up and remove it from the beach. Instead it is left there and is a continuing public health and safety hazard.

For the record, this debris such as driftwood and bamboo does NOT get picked up by volunteers during beach clean ups, e.g., during HEAL THE BAY beach clean ups the volunteers concentrate on human made trash, e.g., glass, plastic, paper, styrofoam, etc.  Additionally, by its own admission the City does not operate its heavy equipment below the high tide line so that beach trash and storm debris must be hand picked in order for it to be removed from the beach.

All of this unsafe debris extends to the border with Venice.

The balance of photos were taken around 12 noon when I returned to the LIFE ROLLS ON® event to check out what was going on...

Just look at the joy and love being shared by both the athletes and the volunteers. It is absolutely wonderful!  The families of the athletes are in attendance as well and get to share in the joy. 

Above and below, LRO volunteers collectively ensure that the disabled athletes are safe and have a lot of fun surfing the waves.  It is really is a sight to behold.

Is it too much to ask of the City of Santa Monica to ensure that the beach is clean and safe for the general public.  Just look at the large debris below. 

It is hoped that the City of Santa Monica will finally recognize that the beach is its Crown Jewel.  The beach should get the same attention and dedication to cleaning up trash and debris as the Pier, Tongva Park and City Hall, if not more.  After all, it is the beach and the shoreline that principally attracts the general public to Santa Monica. 

Respectfully submitted,

William Maguire,
Santa Monica business owner

(All photos and videos by & Copyright William Maguire 2017.)

***   ***   ***

No comments: