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MAKE THE DIFFERENCE
WINKFILES.COM
 
NEWS
May 13, 2002
Complaint Filed To DNREC

Chemical Impurites
Coastal Waters
August 15, 2001
Red Water spotted by
EPA Aerial Surveillance
July 27, 2001
Lobster Alert
June 6, 2001
Waste Water
Discharge Permit

 

 

 

To the editor:                                           September 27,2000

 

From: Bill Winkler , Marine biologist

           P.O.Box 1400

           Ocean View, DE 19970

           302-537-5334

           email bill.wj@verizon.net

 

 

    Beach Alert:  You won’t hear this from the
             State of Delaware unless it’s in a court of law.

 

     On August 11th 2000, I witnessed what I believed to be a Red Tide about 1 ½ miles north of the Indian River Inlet in Delaware.  The water was a reddish brown, more red than brown and clear as a strong tea.   I took a water sample(3/4 gal)  and video taped the phenomenon. One other observation: the water in the surf zone, as it washed back off the beach into the ocean, turned a bright yellow. I knew then, that something was wrong.  I called the Dept. of Natural Resources Emergency Response and reported what I saw and asked them what their truck was doing at the Indian River Inlet. The dispatcher, named Tucker, said “we think we had a spill”. I said we’ll why don’t you close the beaches?  What is this yellow stuff in the water?  Tucker said, we don’t know; but, we have received reports of this yellow stuff from the C&D Canal to Herring Point (about 2miles south of Cape Henlopen on the Atlantic Coast). Whatever the yellow stuff was, it was heading into populated swimming beaches. To cut it short,  no beaches were closed due to the reddish water , town officials and lifeguards say they never saw and red water. 

 

   Per an airplane pilot acquaintance of mine he said he saw this red water the week to August 14th.  He said ,as he flew off of Bethany Beach and turned north to pull his banner, there was red water all the way north to the entrance of Delaware Bay(approx. 15 miles). The pilot said the reddish water was about 500 ft off the beach, but fingers of the reddish water was taken into the bathing area by currents or waves.  I was in one of those areas.  My son, his wife and two friends were with me, surfing for about 2 hours.

 

     That evening , while sleeping, I experienced three spasmatic muscle contractions: the first jerked my head around so fast  I heard two cracking sounds.  I thought what the heck was that?  I really thought I had hurt my neck. After falling back to sleep, I was awaken again by now an instantaneous spasm in my back that mimiced a swan dive. It had been 4 years since I had been surfing. I said to myself, I’ve got to get in shape. Back to sleep. The third and last contraction was a quick kick of one of my legs that was totally, involuntary.

 

     Not until several days later, in talking to Dave, a lifeguard at the Sea Colony Condominums, south of Bethany Beach, did I connect my muscle spasms with the water, or whatever was in the water.  In researching what I thought was a Red Tide, I started asking people if they had symptoms of eye irritation/burning,  or difficulty in breathing(normal symptoms for a toxic dinoflagellate),  Dave said he didn’t notice; but, he did say that the next morning when he woke up his right jaw was locked. The muscle had cramped and did not release for one and a half days!  Dave said,  he thought he had slept on his face wrong or something, that this has never happened before.  That’s when it hit me .  My spasms have never happened before.  Since both Dave and I were in the ocean, could there be a connection?

 

     I had started the Red Tide Register at my store in Ocean View, Delaware.  I asked people if they had been swimming. If so, had they experienced eye irritation or difficulty in breathing. Keep in mind I am only interviewing some of my customers which may amount to .0001 percent of the total people that come to the beach.  People started signing that they did see the reddish water or had experienced eye irritation or difficulty in breathing.  Later that weekend when the winds came up a yellow-green foam piled up on the beach, moving whatever was in the water, up onto the beach.

 

     People coming in my store all summer kept commenting about “pieces of jellyfish” stinging them in the surf.   I said what do you mean pieces of jellyfish. Jellyfish don’t come in pieces unless you’re talking about a tentacle.  Not until the beach clean up day on August 16th did a couple of friends of mine find these “pieces of jellyfish”.  They ranged in size from about 2 inches to 7 inches and looked like shredded plastic, but it was pliable like a jellyfish and smelled like rotting clams!  I took a dry piece in my fingers and looked at it first with a magnifier loop.  I could see on one side , these things are flat like plastic wrap, that it was adhesive since sand, fish scales, seaweed was stuck only to the one side. I massaged the sand off to examine under the microscope.  As I did this, I felt a very smooth layer underneath the adhesive layer. It was so fine like a lanolin or mink oil.  Keep in mind, this stuff is about ½ millimeter thick, like the thinnest plastic wrap.  It didn't stretch. It it’s dry state it tore like rice paper.

 

     Underneath my kid’s microscope, in looking at the plastic like material.   I did not see any cell structure only striations.  Every plant and animal has a cell structure. I must admit, I had never put a jelly fish under the scope before; but , then again have you ever seen a flat jellyfish, with no tentacles and adhesive on one side.?  Me either. This appears to be man-made. Possibly some type of transdermal patch material. The red water could have been caused by the neurotoxin or vaccine in the patch and when these pieces hit you in the water, you got a red patch the shape of the piece that hit you. Whatever it was in theses pieces of jellyfish, instantly was absorbed into our bodies.

 

     My “rash” stuck around for about 3 days, dissappeared for a week came back, dissappeard , came back again and now it’s gone after about a month.  People who were hit in the eyes , experienced a severe burning.  Everyone thought they were jellyfish. But, in looking at the red areas on people, I said, that’s not from a jellyfish.  A jellyfish has nematocysts that have miniature harpoons, spring loaded with a toxin on the tip.  When a tentacle from a jellyfish rubs up against, you’ll know what hit you and have a raised welt on that spot, not a spreading type reddness.

 

     If anyone has experienced  the following symptoms  while on the Atlantic Ocean from Cape Cod to Virginia , please contact me at 302-537-5334 or email to winkfiles@treasurequestshoppe.com   . Encounter with the “pieces of jellyfish”, rash or redness, eye burning, nausea after going in the water for a long time, especially in children who may have swallowed the water, numbness or severe spasms and or difficulty in breathing. Please , only if you were in the Atlantic Ocean and encountered the “pieces of  jellyfish”. You may be the missing piece to the puzzle we need to find out, What really happened at the beach in the summer of 2000?

 

      

 

   

Complaint Registered to DNREC Emergency Response For Not Properly Responding to Coastal Water Impurities

Attorney General Jane Brady
C/O Ms. Joyce Jones
May 13, 2002
Delaware Attorney General's Office
Sussex County
FAX 856-5369

William J. Winkler
101 B Atlantic Ave
Ocean View, DE 19970

Fax total 4 pages, includes cover.


Attorney General Brady:

Consider the following 3 pages a complaint against DNREC Emergency Response, for not responding properly to a complaint by two citizens about lime-green water in Dewey Beach on November 27, 2001.

The concern is for public health. We have problems with out waters here in Sussex County and DNREC seems to be truly disinterested in protecting the health and well being of the people and children who swim in our Atlantic Coast beaches. Could you please check under the Child Endangerment Law to see if it applies in this case. I believe it does.


Sincerely,


William J. Winkler


Cc Vivian Houghton, Esq.
Cc EPA Region III Water Quality Division
Cc Jeff Montgomery News Journal
Cc Editor Cape Gazette
Cc Editor Coast Press
Cc Editor Wave
Cc Editor Daily Times Salisbury
CC Editor Washington Post
CC Editor Baltimore Sun
CC Editor Washington Times




Lime-green Water,
Foam and Stench
On Dewey Beach

Reported on November 27, 2001
To The
Delaware Dept of Natural Resources and Environmental Control (DNREC)
EMERGENCY RESPONSE

by
William J. Winkler, biologist
April 28, 2002

The following is an account of that day and the months thereafter, of one citizens' report of the lime-green water and foam and another citizens' request for a complete chemical analysis to be conducted on the lime-green water and inaction by DNREC on that request.

(chemical analysis is in micrograms per liter, ug/L)
(Chemical analysis by DNREC chemist with 15 years experience)

Note: near shore levels of most elements are normally higher than that of open ocean, but should they be this high?

DNREC EMERGENCY RESPONSE REPORTS:
"NO LIME-GREEN WATER OBSERVED".



On November 27, 2001 a resident of Lewes, Delaware while metal detecting on Dewey Beach's Atlantic Coast, could not help but notice the lime-green color of the water and foam of the same color floating with a stench in the air.

Surfers were in that water, she said. Her phone call to me, about 300pm that afternoon, put in motion what citizens are supposed to do: report unusual colored water to the Department of Natural Resources. I gave her the toll free phone number to call DNREC Emergency Response, 800-662-8802.

The resident from Lewes spoke to Mr. Costello at DNREC. She told him of the lime-green water and stench. Mr. Costello assured her that due to an offshore tropical storm and large swells coming into the Delaware coast, there was no cause for alarm. He told her that the swells were stirring up the bottom sediment and that's all it was. Nothing to be concerned about.

The Lewes resident called me back and told me what Mr. Costello had told her. I then called DNREC Emergency Response and spoke to Mr. Costello. I told him that someone needed to get down to the beach and get a water sample for a complete chemical analysis. He turned my call over to his boss, Mr. Mohrman. Mr. Mohrman and I know each other from a Red Tide incident in August of 2000(some of you may know that story). Mr. Mohrman listened to my concerns about finding out what chemicals or toxins were in the water since swimmers during the summer of 2000 experienced burning skin, eyes, muscle spasms, severe nausea and an inordinate peeling of the skin. He did not say that he would take a water sample.

Mr. Mohrman evidently did ask Mr. Costello to check out the water in Dewey, since he lives in the vicinity. Mr. Costello called the Lewes resident twice from the beach on his cell phone. He told her he did not see any lime-green water or smell anything out of the ordinary. The Lewes resident asked where he was and said, "well you're not where I told you to go". Even after the second call, Mr. Costello was still not where the Lewes resident reported the lime-green water.

In the mean time, I had called a friend of mine at the University of Delaware in Lewes, and told him of the lime-green water and asked if he could go to Dewey Beach to sample the water. He acknowledged that he could and sampled the water. He said he did see the lime-green water in patches but didn't smell anything out of the ordinary. Later he smelled the sample water and said it did have an odor to it.

I called back to Mr. Mohrman and told him that my friend at the U. of Delaware was getting a water sample and that his response truck could pick up the sample from him to have it analyzed.

NO RESPONSE TO CHEMICAL ANALYSIS REQUEST

As of April 25, 2002 after several calls and a personal inquiry to an executive in DNREC by my friend at the University about having the water sample tested, no effort by DNREC Emergency Response has been made to pick up the water sample to have it tested, not even a return phone call.

LIME GREEN-WATER SAMPLE SENT
TO DNREC LAB FOR TESTING

On December 4, 2001, one week after acquiring the water sample from Dewey Beach and not hearing back from DNREC, I called the DNREC lab myself and asked if I could send in a water sample for analysis. The lab tech said sure, send it in. I called my friend at the university and asked him to bring the sample to Ocean View so we could mail the sample to the DNREC lab for analysis. Keep in mind the sample had been in his possession since the day of sampling and all scientific protocol had been followed as far as proper water testing. Approximately one half of the water sample was poured into another sterile bottle and mailed by U.S. Mail to the chemist for analysis. On December 22, 2001, the results listed above in micrograms per liter(ug/L) were received in the mail from the chemist. We did the job that DNREC Emergency Response should have done on November 27, 2001.

I sent a registered letter to Governor Minner when she was elected. I said in the letter that the DNREC needs to be reviewed. In a meeting with Governor Minner in 2001, I reiterated my concerns. Governor Minner said she didn't remember a registered letter and said her aid probably had it.

Changes have yet to be made at DNREC, especially in the water quality section. I am asking again, "Can we get some cooperation please?" People should be made aware of what they are swimming or surfing in or not allowed to swim in the water if there is chemical contamination. Testing only for bacterial levels during the summer months is not enough. Regular chemical testing should be done year round, since surfers are in the water throughout the year.

COASTAL DISCHARGE FROM DELAWARE BAY

May 8, 2001: Per my request Dr. Richard W. Garvine, College of Marine Studies, University of Delaware, Newark, emailed me a brief description of what he's termed the Delaware Coastal Current. " The trapping of Delaware Bay water against the Delmarva coast as it progresses southward imposes potential water quality problems for the beaches and coastal communities there. The water is not pure ocean water from the continental shelf, but instead a mixture of Delaware Bay and shelf water".

How many chemical discharges are there in the Delaware River down the coastal bay to Cape Henlopen? Are the chemicals that are discharged evident in the Dewey Beach sample? Should Knee Deep only days be allowed when the waters are discolored reddish-brown or lime-green? Why do they close beaches during a thunderstorm?




 

 

 

August 30, 2001

Revised: September 9, 2001

 

 

Subject:  Red Water spotted by EPA Aerial Surveillance

               Delaware Coastline   August 15, 2001

 

 

 

    On August 17, 2001, I was inquiring to the EPA/PHL office about a coastal surveillance program that I had found on their web site.  Since the late 1980's the EPA has had this coastal program in effect. It starts on Memorial Day and runs through Labor Day.

 

     The program includes a ship that takes water samples and observes the ocean for garbage spills, oil spills, dead or dying marine mammals etc.  They are looking for anything that may be going wrong. The program also includes aerial surveillance once or twice weekly by volunteers from the Wilmington Civil Air Patrol if weather is permitting.

 

    I called Mr. Don Welsch's office, EPA/PHL, who is listed as the Director in charge of this summer's coastal surveillance program which is touted to keep people vacationers on the coastline safe from spills, algae blooms, etc.(Sharks?).  I asked for a copy of their summer 2000 report from the program. Mr. Welsch's secretary told me she would have Mr. Welsch call me back.

 

    Ms. Nancy Grundle, of the EPA/PHL office returned my call and asked what "issue" did I have. I said, I don't have an issue, I would like a copy of your coastal surveillance year 2000 report if possible. Ms. Grundle said, she didn't believe there was a report, that only individual log books that were held by a Mr. Mark Barath in charge of Aerial Surveillance and by Mr. Bill Muir, Oceanographer in charge of the ship that cruises the coast would be the only "reports" available.  I asked, " a Federal Agency doesn't have an annual report of a coastal program"?  Ms. Grundle said , not to her knowledge. Now, that means to me that a report probably exists or at least it should.

 

     Shortly after calling the EPA office in PHL, I received a phone message from Mr. Jack Pingree of DNREC(Dept. of Natural Resources and Environmental Control).  He said, " Bill the EPA aerial surveillance reported red water from Indian River Inlet all the way to Fenwick Island(Delaware) on Wednesday, August 15(2001)". Now I thought, why is Mr. Pingree calling me?  Did someone from the EPA call him and alert him that I "found out" about the EPA surveillance program?  How else?  Phone bills can be checked if necessary by the EPA's Inspector General's Office when I file that complaint, not that it matters a whole hell of a lot. Why the cover-up about the EPA aerial surveillance?  

 

     Who is pulling the strings in DNREC that Mr. Pingree has knowledge and no one else out of DNREC does?  Is DePasquale(current Secretary of DNREC) ready to be removed as was the prior Secretary for mismanagement?  There is no regard for the Public's Health coming down from DNREC.  People swam in the Red Water in Bethany Beach and Fenwick Island on August 16th and 17th. Northeasterly winds blew the red slick into the beach.  A greenish brown foam accumulated on the beaches.  By State Law, DNREC is responsible for the public's health on the recreational beaches – not the Dept. of Health as one would think.  Does Governor Minner know about the Red Water?  Is the Delaware government more concerned about keeping the beaches opened to supposedly keep the economy going?  Wouldn't people go and spend money if they couldn't swim, like they do on a rainy day?  As in Florida, it took 9 shark attacks over a period of a week to close the beaches in that area.  This is appalling that fellow human beings in charge of the public's health let things like this happen. Who would want to swim in reddish brown water?  Who would knowingly swim in water where sharks are near shore? People do. Lifeguards too.  This is the world we live in or at least the State(s) that we live in. Maybe, Maryland, New Jersey, Virginia or North Carolina will be more protective of it's residents and tourists. Should our regular visitors go to out-of-state beaches so they can be assured of their safety?

 

    In the case of Delaware, regardless what lies the Public Health Dept and Beebe Hospital told the Center for Disease Control, there were numerous ailments that came from our Atlantic Coastline during the summer of 2000(Dept of Public Health reported zero cases reported from what we thought was a Red Tide last year).  I have as you many of you may know, started a Red Tide Register in August of 2000.   People that came in my store who saw the Red Water, Yellow tinge(chemical reaction with oxygen??, there are no bioluminescent organisms in the water).  My 5 type written page report on just the illnesses that I found was sent to the Delaware Dept. of Public Health. They with-held my report from the CDC! I sent the report to the CDC and is now in the summer of 2000 Red Water file.  The Red Tide registrants reactions to the water included: burning sensation of the skin, eyes, severe nausea, dizziness, cramps or severe muscle spasms, peeling of the skin, insomnia for several days(up to 6 for one family), Coxsackie virus contracted by 3 families I documented(one 6 yr old almost died). Raw sewage dumped from Wilmington can carry Coxsackie viral cysts and cryptosporidium cysts.  These are not even being tested for in our water program (www.epa.gov/ost/beaches ).

 

    I have examined the red water and coastal waters under the microscope.  There are NO RED TIDE organisms present. There are Pfiesteria-like organisms present in large numbers. To my knowledge, Pfiesteria blooms are not called a Red Tide.  Yet, the water is reddish and the symptoms are Pfiesteria symptoms not that of a brevetoxin. The Center for Disease Control informed me that the symptoms that I described to them(burning sensation of the skin, burning eyes, nausea , numbness or severe cramps,  were not documented to be caused by the Red Tide toxin, brevetoxins. Are the symptoms caused by Pfiesteria toxins?  See CDC 1997 Pfiesteria Report  In this article for the CDC "Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report" dated October 10, 1997 states " The attendees of the workshop agreed on a combined set of environmental conditions and clinical signs and symptoms that together may represent adverse consequences of exposure to these organisms(Pfiesteria piscicida).  The clinical features in humans include any of the following signs and symptoms: 1) memory loss, 2) confusion, 3)acute skin burning( on direct contact with water), or 4) three or more of an additional set of conditions (headaches, skin rash, eye irritation, upper respiratory irritation, muscle cramps, and gastrointestinal complaints /i.e., nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, and/or abdominal cramps/).

     "Workshop attendees suggested using the above framework to identify potentially affected person and recommended initiating the following public health activities:

1.        uniform multistate surveillance for potential P.piscicida-and MRO-related illness;

2.        multistate, CDC-coordinated, epidemiologic studies to determine possible human health effects associated with P. piscicida and MRO exposure; and

3.        identification of a biomarker of exposure to the toxins produced by these organisms.

  Among the attendees listed was AL Hathcock, Ph.D., Division of Public Health,, Delaware Health and Social Svcs.

    Since the CDC workshop was held on October 10, 1997 the Delaware State General Assembly changed the responsibility for the public's health at recreational beaches from the Dept. of Health over to the Dept. of Natural Resources and Environmental Control.

                                                                                                                                                                              

   Chemical tests taken by DNREC last year on August 13, 2000 at Bethany Beach yielded 2066 micrograms per liter of Aluminum (normal in sea water is 10 micrograms/L), Arsenic, Thallium, Colbalt and other heavy metals were recorded in the chemical analysis.  Factory discharges on the Delaware Bay are responsible for these high levels of chemicals in the water.  THIS STORY IS NOT GOING TO GO AWAY , I GUARANTEE THAT.  See www.WinkFiles.com  and read the article reference the Barcroft Company discharge permit renewal.

 

    Delaware Government Officials have come to a crossroads in the history of the State.  They will have to make a decision on if they(you) want the State to remain a chemical manufacturing state or if you want it to be a tourist destination State.  You will not be able to have both.  The future is here and the guys who put this State together have made some very serious mistakes.  DNREC has know for up to 10 years that the Delaware Coastal Current (as explained in WinkFiles) existed , and that it carried the chemicals and raw sewage down the coast to our Atlantic Coastal beaches.  Dr. Garvine, U. of Delaware, Newark informed DNREC that this was happening.  Per Dr. Garvine in a personal conversation:  "They (DNREC)didn't seem too interested". 

 

    All I have to say is do what you want, but don't turn your head to this or say what can I do about this?.  I will keep publishing the truth of what is happening here in Delaware until the waters are safe to swim in.  People are getting hurt by the waters here everyday.  Delaware's system of "cover-up" is now a system that has been "opened up".  The State or DNREC can deny and try to discredit me as they have in the past.  Too many people know the facts and too many people are not happy about what they have found out.

 

     On August 20, 2001 I called Governor Minner's office.  Greg LeVine took my call.  I told him that the EPA surveillance plane had reported Red Water from Indian River Inlet all the way to Fenwick Island.  I also told him that to my knowledge, no lifeguards were notified of the Red Water.  On August 16th and 17th, the Red Water became a greenish foam on the beach as northeasterly winds blew the water into the swimming area.  How could DNREC not put out an advisory. They have no idea what is in that Red Water, or do they?  Mr.LeVine said he would call DNREC and call me back. I never received a call back.

 

     On August 30th I called and left another message with Mr. Levine. Still no call back as of 410pm September  9th.  Last year, in the fall, I was on a call-in radio show with Governor Minner.  I told her on the air that when I reported the Red Water on August 11, 2000  I was told by DNREC Emergency Response dispatcher that "we can't close the beaches" .  Governor Minner told me that whoever said that was incompetent!  Governor Minner told me that Delaware has a procedure to close beaches. I believed her and I'm sure everyone of the thousands of listeners did too.  She sounded sincere.

 

     After the radio show, I wrote Senator Bunting and asked for a copy of the "procedures" for beach closures here in Delaware.  Senator Bunting sent a letter to the Secretary of the Department of Natural Resources, Mr. DiPasquale, asking him to forward a copy of the procedures to myself and to the Senator.  As of almost one year later, neither Senator Bunting nor myself have received a copy of the "so called procedures for beach closures".

 

     If you haven't figured it out by now, we have all been hoodwinked into thinking all is well on the Eastern Front.  Well it isn't. Avoidance of the problem of the public getting sick from the waters will not help anything. Your family's health is at risk with government officials that don't really give a damn about you. They may be Homo sapiens, but they are not human beings (Webster definition: having the characteristic qualities or nature of mankind or of a man. Humane: having the feelings and dispositions 'proper' to man, having tenderness, compassion and a disposition to treat others with kindness). So, by allowing the people on the Delaware beaches to swim in the reddish water is to me, inhumane(last year the reddish water was documented by U.of North Carolina, Wilmington of having neurotoxins (brevetoxin 3 in the August 11, 2000 sample.  And, don't forget about the high Aluminum content that DNREC sampled themselves and did their own chemical analysis.  So, what does brevetoxins, high Aluminum (hydoxide or chloride?), and whatever else is in the water do to people?  Ask those people who swam in the reddish water last year or twice so far this year. 

 

     Governor Minner, can we please be notified when the reddish water is coming out of the Delaware Bay so maybe we can make up our own minds if we want to be swimming out there?

 

 

 

                                                                                Sincerely,

 

                                                                               

                                                                                William J. Winkler, Biologist

                                                                                Ocean View, DE 19970





Lobster Alert

"Tissue biopsy and observations of a lobster with several holes in the carapace, claws and connective tissue."

 

William J. Winkler, Biologist

Ocean View, Delaware

July 27, 2001

 

     On July 18, 2001 I received a call from a concerned woman, Chris, who had purchased a few lobsters, one of which was noticeably infested with something that had bored or eaten holes through its' shell and connective tissue at the joint area of the claws.

 

     Chris had called Dr. Ritchie Shoemaker in Pocomoke, Maryland to ask his advice.  Dr. Shoemaker referred Chris to me since I was using Ritchie's microscope for phytoplankton study.  Chris's daughter brought the lobster to Ocean View where I video taped the outside showing the holes and festering in the shell and connective tissue in the joints. 

 

    I then proceeded to take a connective tissue sample where the lobster was trying to reform its' shell.  It appeared that whatever had infected the tissue was still there, since the repair secretion was ongoing and could not keep up with the infection.

 

     The tissue sample was also video taped and results yielded an infestation of nematodes.  Nematodes were imbedded throughout the tissue, even at deeper levels.  No other foreign organisms were observed.  40X and 100X magnification was used. The nematodes were boring into the flesh, probably hampering the shells' repair job.  I deduced that the nematodes were most likely a secondary infestation to the primary cause of the holes in the shell and connective tissue.

 

     I contacted the U.S. Food and Drug Administration in Washington D.C., and asked for referral to a marine pathologist or related expert who knows about crustacean diseases.  The expert was out of the country and an email was forwarded to her for consultation as of July 25th.

 

     Today,  July 26th,  CNN reported a shell-eating bacteria (chitinolytic bacteria) was affecting lobster in the New England area.  My first thought was, yea and here too!  The "Daily Times" from  Salisbury, Maryland reported the same story as CNN , yet added that the lobster in Maryland, are not affected.  I called the city editor, Joe Weber, and left a message with my biopsy results and said that I think their reporting was in error.  I have not received a call back from Mr. Weber.

 

     I called Chris to tell her about the shell-eating bacteria and that it is possible that this could be the same problem here in the Mid-Atlantic.  Chris said she would contact the lobsterman that caught the lobster in question and have them call me.

 

    Another friend spoke with another lobsterman last week and he said they were catching a lot of "deformed" lobster that they were throwing back.

 

     Chris's husband called me to offer some information.  He had eaten two other lobster that were purchased at the same time as the infected one.  He said he had diarrhea for two days and wasn't feeling quite right.  He also said that he could eat "anything" and never gets sick like this.   He knew something was wrong.  I strongly suggested he see Dr. Shoemaker asap to take the visual contrast test to determine if he had ingested any biotoxins which may have come from the bacteria.

 

   Many questions remain to be answered. The first and foremost is, that if you have eaten a lobster recently and developed diarrhea to please contact Dr. Shoemaker and arrange to take the visual contrast test to determine if you have ingested any biotoxins. 

 

    

 

    

 

   

Waste Water Discharge Permit

Mr. Peder Hansen                                     June 6, 2001

Water Resources

DNREC

89 Kings Highway

Dover, DE 19901                Reference: NPDES permit renewal # DE000000

 

Mr. Hansen:

 

     I am asking that a public hearing be held before any consideration of renewal of the Barcroft Company's NPDES discharge permit.  In our phone conversation last week, you said you did not know about the "Delaware Coastal Current" which carries Delaware Bay water right down the Atlantic Coast to the recreational beaches.   Richard Garvine Ph.D. Physical Oceanographer, University of Delaware, Newark has authored or co-authored several research papers about the "Delaware Coastal Current" which include:

    "Subtidal Frequency Estuary-Shelf Interaction: Observations Near Delaware Bay" 1991 by Richard W. Garvine

 

    " Bouyancy and wind forcing of a coastal current" 1993 by Andreas Munchow and Richard W. Garvine

 

     "Dynamical Properties of a Buoyancy-Driven Coastal Current"  1993 by Andreas Munchow and Richard W. Garvine

 

     "Frontal observations of the Delaware Coastal Current source region" 1994  by Todd M. Sanders and Richard W. Garvine

 

    " Transport and Recruitment of Blue Crab Larvae: a Model with Advection and Mortality" 1995 by R. W. Garvine, C.E.Epifanio, C.C. Epifano and K-C. Wong

 

     "Remote Sensing of Ocean Salinity: Results from the Delaware Coastal Current Experiment" 1997 by D. M. Le Vine and M. Kao (Goddard Space Flight Center, Lab for Hydrospheric Processes, Greenbelt, Md) & R. W. Garvine & T. Sanders

 

     "Fresh water delivery to the continental shelf and subsequent mixing: An observational study"  2001  by Todd M. Sanders and Richard W. Garvine

 

          In an email summary( attached ),  from Dr. Garvine about the Delaware Coastal Current he states in part: " The trapping of Delaware Bay water against the Delmarva coast as it progresses southward imposes potential water quality problems for the beaches and coastal communities there.  The water is not pure ocean water from the continental shelf, but instead a mixture of Delaware Bay and shelf water."

 

     During August 2000, swimmers from Cape Henlopen to Fenwick Island were experiencing a "burning sensation" on their skin when they were in the water.  I have documented several people who also had a severe burning of the eyes.  Two people, that I have documented had facial muscle go numb or cramp up.  I personally experienced three very severe muscle spasms.  There was something in the water in August 2000.  We know there were brevetoxins from the Red Tide ( Chattonella verruculosa), but in talking to Dr. Lori Fleming, University of Miami School of Medicine, who has worked with brevetoxins for about 20 years, said that these symptoms of burning sensation of the skin, eyes burning or muscle cramping are NOT symptoms of brevetoxin interaction. There were also several cases of people whom I talked to and documented, with severe nausea which they attributed to inadvertently swallowing the water while swimming or body surfing. 

 

     In talking to Dr. Don Anderson of Woods Hole Oceanographic Institute in August of 2000, about the symptoms we were having here from swimming in the Atlantic, he said, it reminds him of an incident in Brazil. Twenty years ago, Oceanographers thought they were dealing with a Red Tide when in reality, it turned out to be a chemical spill!

 

     On August 13, 2000, Sergio Huerta M.D. of DNREC,  sampled the water at Bethany Beach and at Sea Colony.  He sent in these water samples to be tested for chemicals (results attached).  Did Dr. Huerta suspect a chemical spill?  Note on the report the level of Aluminum is 2,015 ug/L at Bethany and 2,066 ug/L at Sea Colony.  Normal levels found in ocean water are 10ug/L (reference: The encyclopedia of marine resources  edited by Frank E. Firth, New England Marine Resources Information Program University of Rhode Island).

 

     Months of research of my own time, went into trying to find out where the excessive Aluminum came from.  The closest discharge, other than the South Coastal Sewage outfall, whose effluent according to Jack Pingree of DNREC, is picked up by the Labrador Current and taken away from the coast line, is the Barcroft Company's discharge at the fishing pier at Cape Henlopen.  In speaking with Kim Brittingham at Barcroft, I asked, what the composition of the Aluminum discharge was.  He said most likely, Aluminum Hydroxide.  In a grab sample taken by DNREC in Febuary 2001 , the Al levels were around 4700 ug/L at the discharge site.  Knowing that the Delaware Coastal Current picks up the water in this area and takes it out off Cape Henlopen and right down the coast(as per Dr. Garvine's statement and reports),  that shows with the August 13, 2000 sample ( if Al levels were that of Feb 2001 at the point of discharge ) taken in Bethany Beach at 2,015ug/L of Al would be 43% of total discharge and 2,066 ug/L 44% of total discharge levels of Aluminum Hydroxide.

 

     Per Romero Kuyvenhoven, a banner airplane pilot who has been flying  the Bethany Beach area for 15years.  I also have it in my notes with date and time, that sometimes it looks like a river of reddish water coming all the way from Cape Henlopen, about 500 ft off the beach, heading south.  Out of the "river" there are fingers that move into the beach area, as if from currents or winds, he said.

 

     I called the J.T. Baker Chemical Company and asked them what effects Aluminum Hydroxide would have on people.  The person referred me to their web site http://www.jtbaker.com/msds/englishhtml/A2796.htm  The Material Safety Data Sheet (MSDS) shows a warning: causes irritation to eyes and respiratory tract. 

 

     In searching the EPA web site www.epa.gov/ecotox/ecotox_home.htm  for effects that Aluminum Chloride might have on Salt Water organisms I found:

   * A polychaete worm Capitella capitata dies at levels of around 400 ug/L after a seven-day exposure.

 

   *  Polychaete worm Ctenodrilus serratus dies at a level of 97ug/L after 96 hours of exposure.

 

    * American or Virginia oyster Crassostrea virginica  dies at levels of 7500 ug/L after 48hours of exposure. (Dr. Maxted formerly of DNREC has reports that show different chemicals if not lethal do cause reduction in growth and fecundity).

 

     Other marine organisms are affected, including the Atlantic Salmon, documented in the ecotox web site.

 

     This comment has been only in reference to one chemical and/or chemical compound.  I am also concerned about the high levels of Magnesium recorded in the August 13, 2000 water sample report and other elements such as but not to be restricted to, Thallium, Arsenic, Silver and Lead.

 

     I believe that if, in fact, Barcroft's discharge is reaching the recreational beaches, Barcroft can do a better job of cleaning up their discharge to a more acceptable level that is not harmful to the marine organisms or people.

 

                                                                        Sincerely,

 

 

 

                                                                        William J. Winkler

                                                                        101 #B Atlantic Ave.

                                                                        Ocean View, DE 19970