Delray Beach tourist “saw a 2-inch tar ball wash ashore this morning”; “It smelled like oil”

Tar ball in Delray? Probably not, officials say, Palm Beach Post, July 11, 2010:

A tar ball discovered on Delray Beach near Ingraham Avenue is likely nothing more than boat bilge or something nastier, like boat sewage, officials said today .

Emme Porter, a Washington Capitals hockey cheerleader and modeling agency CEO, said she saw a 2-inch tar ball wash ashore this morning, while out swimming with her husband and young baby. Concerned it might have come from the gulf oil disaster, she collected it in a Ziploc bag and called authorities.

“We picked it up and it smelled like oil. We were like, ‘Oh my gosh, it’s one of those tar balls they’ve been talking about in the news,’ Porter said. …

Unfortunately, it’s not unusual for sewage or bilge from boats to be dumped into the water. Regardless of the source, Coast Guard officials advised beachgoers not to touch such material with bare hands.

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