38 Derelict Boats Turned-In

Photo: Ford, Brad

Over the first six months of a joint boat take-back program, the Multnomah County Sheriff’s Office River Patrol Unit, in partnership with Oregon Metro and the Oregon State Marine Board, have disposed of 19 derelict and abandoned vessels in Metro’s district. Approximately, five have been removed from waterways.

The boat take-back program helps boat owners dispose of unseaworthy, damaged or poor condition vessels. Often, when end-of-life boats are given away or sold for a low price, they end up abandoned or dumped in rivers or public lands. Dumped boats can create significant navigational and environmental hazards.

Between January 30, 2023, and July 5, 2023,:

  • Metro has received 69 applications for removal, and,
  • 38 derelict boats turned-in: 19 boats have been disposed of, with 19 additional boats approved for disposal.
  • The derelict boats range in size and age, with the average size being 17 feet and the average age being 50 years old. Fiberglass and foam are predominant construction materials.

In about half of the applications, boat owners stated financial hardship as a primary reason for removal.

The program is offered to boat owners at no-cost to encourage disposal. Funding comes from Oregon House Bill 5202, which addresses waste impacts from the COVID-19 pandemic. The funding allows MCSO and our partners to tackle public dumping and abandoned vessels.

The boat take-back program is scheduled to be operational until October 31, 2023, or until the program’s funds are exhausted.

Free boat disposal is only available for boats located within the Oregon Metro district boundary. The program does not cover disposal of boat trailers. To learn more or apply, fill out an application form online.

Source: Multnomah County Sheriff's Office

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