Tsunami rubble may be headed our way

  • Apr. 8, 2011 1:00 p.m.

Beach combing could be a whole new experience here in the next couple of years, if an oceanographer’s predictions are right. Within three years, islanders can expect to see some of the rubble from the March 11 tsunami in Japan washing up on our shores, says AccuWeather.com. Oceanographer Curt Ebbesmeyer said eventually the rubble will make its way thousands of kilometers across the Pacific to the west coast via ocean currents that spin clockwise from Japan. Items such as boats, cars, even whole buildings have already been seen many kilometers off the eastern shores of Japan, and according to Mr. Ebbesmeyer the rubble patch could spread to cover an area more than 100 miles.”If the patch does land, it’s likely to be massive,” said Mr. Ebbesmeyer. It is probable that, according to AccuWeather.com, storms will break up the more fragile parts of the garbage, but sturdy items could end up intact and on our beaches. The current that flows from Japan northeast to the Northern Pacific eventually veers in two directions once it nears the western shores of North America. One heads north toward Haida Gwaii and Alaska, the other south toward California. The rubble may break up and some could end up in the infamous garbage patch in the North Pacific gyre.