Berkeley Marina reopened, limited traffic

City of Berkeley officials said today the prohibition against boat traffic in and out of the harbor at the Berkeley Marina imposed after the Nov. 7 Cosco Busan oil spill has been lifted.

However, city officials said because harbor and shoreline cleanup is ongoing, recreational boat owners are still asked to refrain from travel if possible.

They also said other Marina and Aquatic Park users are being reminded that because of the water contamination and the ongoing wildlife rescue and shoreline efforts, all recreational water sports such as small-craft sailing, canoeing and wind-surfing, are suspended until further notice.

From 8 a.m. to noon on Saturday there will be hazardous material and physical danger training for 80 to 100 volunteers at the WestBerkeley Senior Center at 1900 Sixth St. in Berkeley.

The City of Berkeley is hosting the training and is helping to deploy volunteers and the training itself is being put on by the California State Department of Fish and Game.

Berkeley City Manager Phil Kamlarz said, “We're pleased by the number of people who have come out to volunteer. Due to the overflow crowds on Wednesday, we're expecting a large crowd for Saturday.”

Volunteers who go through the training will be given badges that certify they received the training that allows them to work as disaster service workers. The training certification badges are good as long as Cosco Busan cleanup continues.

Previously trained volunteers who haven't yet received badges can report to the Shorebird Nature Center to receive them.

Berkeley officials also said off-leash dogs have been prohibited in the marina, Aquatic Park and city shoreline areas while bird rescue efforts continue. Dogs are required to be on a leash no longer than six feet while they're within 250 feet of the water.

Officials said oil-soaked birds are in danger of hypothermia if they go back in the water so it's important to try not to startle them while they are resting safely on the beach.

Volunteers have been helping to spot injured birds while trained bird rescue personnel retrieve them, but the presence of dogs is scaring some birds back into the water, according to city officials.

No birds have been soiled at Aquatic Park, but several have gotten oil from the Bay and flown into the park, where they were rescued, officials said.

— Bay City News

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