BP BP Sand Shark Still on the Hunt for Tar Balls, Is It Enough?

The contract crews from BP have marched onwards to Pensacola Beach, cleaning up tar balls by hand, however the national seashore’s supervisors were saving the heavy equipment until the Turtle and Bird mating season was over and done with, lest they disturb them even more than the spill itself did.

For the moment, scores of workers are removing and cleaning away tar balls with their bare hands. Morris commented that the crews are cleaning things away much more effectively now that the weather has cooled down and the laborors now have more experience in collecting the tar balls from the sand.

However, it is now time to stop messing around, and call in the big guns to get the mess cleared away. Jason Bragg, who is in charge of the machine removal of the tar balls from Panhandle beaches, has commented that while the Sand Shark isn’t a “rocket ship”, it is quite thorough, and removes all objects from the sand which are bigger than three millimeters – about the same size as the needles are across in a tattoo parlor.

This machine is eleven feet tall, weighs in at about 35 tons, has a top speed if two miles and hour and is manned by a skeleton crew of between six and ten people. In roughly one day – two ten hour shifts – the machine can clear away an area of sand which is eight feet wide and one and a half miles long. At this rate though, the beaches won’t be cleaned until late 2011 if then…