Crab season opens, clams close
The entire Oregon Coast will open Sunday to commercial crabbing after a second test for domoic acid here came back clean — more than two months after the crab season typically begins.
Fishermen were seen unloading crab pots from trailers Friday in preparation for setting them in the ocean. The 73-hour preset is scheduled to begin Feb. 4, the Oregon Department of Agriculture said in a report Thursday. Gear can be pulled beginning Feb. 7.
Friday, however, the ODA announced that recreational razor clamming is closed from the south jetty of the Umpqua River to the south jetty of Coos Bay due to elevated levels of domoic acid found there.
That means the entire coast, except from Cascade Head north of Lincoln City, is closed to that activity.
The ODA checks for toxins such as domoic acid every fall before opening the crab season. Section by section, the coast opened for commercial crabbing as clean tests came back, but the area between Gold Beach and the California border remained closed for nine weeks. An additional stretch from Gold Beach to Cape Blanco was closed to serve as a buffer.
The ODA will continue to test for shellfish toxins every other week, as tides permit. Reopening an area requires two consecutive tests in the safe range.
Oregon State Police (OSP) has launched *OSP (star OSP) for people to contact OSP dispatch for non-emergencies from their mobile phones.
“*OSP (*677) was established to provide the public with a quick, easy-to-remember number to use for round-the-clock, non-emergency reporting of traffic safety, highway hazards and obstructions, minor crashes and requests for assistance,” the agency said in a press release. “It is not an emergency number; 9-1-1 remains the number to call for an emergency.”
Currently, Verizon, AT&T, Sprint, T-Mobile and US Cellular have signed onto the deal with OSP. OSP officials are working with other carriers to to promote it, as well.
Those who do not have cell phone service, or have providers that do not support this number, can still call OSP, toll free, at 800-452-7888.