Saturday, July 31, 2010

Destin and Qualified Community Responders

The oil disaster in the Gulf of Mexico caused a lot of people to change their plans about vacationing along the shorelines of the Gulf. Part of my plans were to spend a week here with family and enjoy the beautiful water and sands of Destin Florida. The thoughts of vacationing on oily beaches and not being allowed into the water plagued my mind for weeks before our scheduled trip but that did not stop us from going.

We were surprised with what we found when we arrived. There was no oil and the waters were perfect. We also noticed a reduction in the amount of people vacationing here this summer. As a matter of fact, this week we have yet to wait longer than 15 minutes for dinner (and that only happened 1 time). What a pleasant surprise.

What I did notice was people daily combing the beaches for oil. These guys are Qualified Community Responders and are paid by BP.

Look at them closely. They are wearing rubber boots, rubber gloves, long pants, and carrying what looks to be butterfly nets. They are walking up and down the beach everyday sifting through seaweed looking for oil deposits. What is interesting is where they are walking. These two are looking for oil 5 yards from the highest point water normally gets during high tide. Do you think they will find anything there? I don't. First of all I don't think there is anything to find in Destin. I applaud BP for training and hiring unemployed people at 18 dollars an hour to do this job (supervisors are getting 32 an hour) but it seems to be a blind task here in Destin.

These guys will tell you they are finding it in the seaweed but I have yet to locate any. Their response to this would be that I am not trained to see it. In any case, for what seems to be little to no oil there are a lot of people working at 18 dollars an hour to clean it up. I counted 14 this past Monday.

So if you come to Destin look for the little tents with people in yellow boots sitting underneath. There should be a four wheeler close by.

Every now and then a couple will make a trek through the beautiful white sands looking for tar-balls. They are the Qualified Community Responders.

Come to Destin where the beaches are white and the water is clear. I have enjoyed an awesome vacation with my family at the most beautiful beach in the country.

In Christ,
Doug Johnson

Location:Hwy 98 E,Destin,United States

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