Coast Guard crews responding to tar balls at Cocoa Beach, Fla.

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. – Coast Guard pollution investigators from Sector Jacksonville are responding to a reports of tar balls found on area beaches in Cocoa Beach, Fla., and Cape Canaveral, Fla., Wednesday.

Coast Guard Marine Safety Detachment Canaveral received notification from the community Tuesday of tar balls about the size of a golf ball washing ashore along Cocoa Beach. Coast Guard Shoreline Cleanup Assessment Teams conducted a shoreline survey along Cocoa Beach and confirmed the presence of tar balls. The Coast Guard has contracted Eagle-SWS, a pollution response company, to assist with cleanup efforts and manage the disposal of all tar balls collected.

Samples of the tar balls were collected and will be shipped to the Marine Safety Laboratory in New London, Conn., for analysis to determine the origin of the source.

The Coast Guard, Florida Department of Environmental Protection and Eagle-SWS will remain on-scene until remaining tar balls are removed.

The public is asked to report the sighting of any tar balls to the Coast Guard Sector Jacksonville Operations Center at (904) 564-7513.

The public is reminded that tar balls are considered hazardous materials and should only be retrieved by trained personnel.

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