View Full Version : Portlandís homeless camps can be found on its rivers as well

01-17-2019, 07:42 PM
The city of Portland has a serious homeless problem on the streets and sidewalks. This week KGW8 reports the problem is also spilling out onto the cityís rivers. Homeless people have been livng in abandoned fiberglass boats on the Willamette and Columbia rivers. And because these boats are already falling apart, they rarely have a way to pump out sewage they accumulate, so that ends up being dumped in the river. In fact, the boats themselves often end up sinking to the bottom where they can leak sewage, oil, and battery acid into the water.

Thereís a pretty clear reason this is happening. When you have an old car that doesnít run, thereís a scrap market for the parts and materials. Even the steel that the carís frame and body are made of is worth something to a salvage yard. Thereís a similar market for old boat parts but not for the fiberglass hulls. The only option for getting rid of a fiberglass hull is to take it to a dump and pay as much as $3,500 to have it shredded. Thatís a lot of money to be rid of something youíve decided is trash. Itís much easier for owners to offer the boats for a little money on Craigslist or to simply abandon them on the street somewhere.