Project Jukebox

Digital Branch of the University of Alaska Fairbanks Oral History Program
Bob Linville, Part 2

This is a continuation of the interview with Bob Linville on December 17, 2013 by Alicia Zorzetto at the public library in Seward, Alaska. Amanda Johnson operated the video camera. In this second part of a four part interview, Bob talks about working on the cleanup of the 1989 Exxon Valdez Oil Spill, especially with the oiled bird rescue in Resurrection Bay. He also discusses his assessment of the cleanup and the bioremdiation. This interview has been edited.

Digital Asset Information

Archive #: Oral History 2013-26-14_PT.2

Project: Exxon Valdez Oil Spill Project Jukebox
Date of Interview: Dec 17, 2013
Narrator(s): Bob Linville
Interviewer(s): Alicia Zorzetto
Videographer: Amanda Johnson
Transcriber: Joan O'Leary
Location of Interview:
Location of Topic:
Funding Partners:
Alaska Resources Library & Information Services, Alaska State Library, Institute of Museum and Library Services, Prince William Sound Regional Citizens' Advisory Council
Alternate Transcripts
There is no alternate transcript for this interview.
Slideshow
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Sections

Getting involved in rescuing oiled birds and animals

Competition for high-paid contracts for boats to be hired for cleanup

Impact of the oil spill on herring and salmon fisheries

Corruption with contracts

Live birds being oiled to increase numbers and payment

Reporting bad behavior

Assessment of the cleanup and of Exxon

Leaving the cleanup operation to go fishing

Beach cleanup and hot water treatment

Fishing

Weathering of oil on the beaches and bioremediation

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Transcript

THIS VIDEO HAS BEEN EDITED.

ALICIA ZORZETTO: Had three children and your youngest was still a newborn, so I mean it makes -- it makes -- it seems like you were stuck and forced to make a very difficult decision and at some point you kind of need to put your family first.

BOB LINVILLE: I had my place at Driftwood. I was going to be there no matter what. I wanted to see everything what happened, you know.

And I just wasn’t going to have some sort of operation happening out there.

I had more of a -- more at stake than just about -- I mean, just this place meant a lot to my family.

We lived out there before the kids were born and they were totally -- it was kind of like a wonderful thing for us, you know. ALICIA ZORZETTO: Right.

BOB LINVILLE: You'd spend as much time out there when the kids were little as we could.

And I just wasn’t going to have some huge thing going on and not be a part of herr -- ALICIA ZORZETTO: Right.

BOB LINVILLE: They were hiring boats and we really didn’t have one cause I didn’t want, you know, commit the fishing boat that I was partners with my brother.

But -- cause I knew we -- I wasn’t sure we were ever going to get paid to clean up this thing. The oil spill was going to --

if these Exxon or Alyeska was going to actually come through. I didn’t trust them for anything.

ALICIA ZORZETTO: Right.

BOB LINVILLE: So I was -- we were planning on fishing if we could -- at Driftwood at least.

Anyway we -- we had that. We had the Coyote and we had the Zodiac, and in the end we did wind up getting hired with both of them on the 10th of April, if I recall.

To go out and use the boat and to rescue birds.

ALICIA ZORZETTO: Okay. BOB LINVILLE: We were in bird rescue and you needed --

that’s when you needed out there to rescue birds on this outer -- outer coast. You know, it's rough.

ALICIA ZORZETTO: Right.

BOB LINVILLE: And you can’t get -- those birds are right on the Cape and they're where they normally are that’s where the rookeries are.

And they get up on the rocks -- they’re oiled. They can’t fly. They can only live so long.

And you got to get in there with the waves and everything else. You can’t take a big boat in there.

And you can only operate so long with the Zodiac. So we got the Bowpicker and the Zodiac and there was three of us that were hired to do that.

And we went out the first -- they gave us -- they kind of got an organization -- they were frantically trying to figure out what they were going to do with these oiled birds, and they were putting up some sort of bird cleanup.

It got pretty elaborate in the end, but in the beginning it was just -- they were just trying to, you know, establish it. ALICIA ZORZETTO: Yeah.

BOB LINVILLE: But the only real quantity of live birds happened in the first few days. You know, if we could have got out there a few days earlier we could have got a lot of it.

They gave us a bunch of boxes and equipment to get these birds and put them in the boxes and run them back to town.

And we took, I don’t know, a dozen boxes or something and went out there and just filled them all in 15 min --

I mean, I mean just how long it took to get up there and --

I mean they were just standing on the ledges just where the waves are come up and they're just standing there just like this, you know.

You know, it just -- I mean I -- there was dead birds all over the place, but that’s the live ones, you know.

So you could go up there and they're freaking out and everything, but they're really not going to jump in the water, so --

It was mainly riding up on a wave, you know, in the Zodiac and timing it so you could up to where you could actually reach them, you know, and back off.

So we brought in a lot of live birds, you know, in the first few days, and then we had another storm and it was -- from that time in our particular little rookery there.

You know this is the main rookery at Cape Resurrection and it just --

there was oiled birds occasionally, but the quantity of them were pretty much -- it was over. There were just dead birds.

And I think later on, I mean, birds could actually get oiled in the oil that was --

there was just, you know, with the oil coming off the beaches there was just oil all over the place out there usually in tidelines or rips and stuff.

And a bird could get into that and get re-oiled and get oiled, you know, so it wasn’t like there wasn't any live birds.

ALICIA ZORZETTO: Right. BOB LINVILLE: But as time passed there were fewer and fewer live birds.

And so really the bird rescue here became more of a dead bird thing if you want to be --

ALICIA ZORZETTO: Cleanup -- cleanup.

BOB LINVILLE: They wanted -- they wanted document it, so we --

we patrolled beaches and pretty much brought in everything that was oiled, you know, that we found.

That was an -- any oiled animal we picked it up. ALICIA ZORZETTO: Uh-huh.

BOB LINVILLE: So that started on April 10th and we -- we had both the Zodiac and the Coyote under contract and we were living at our cabin.

We had two other people there besides our family.

And we'd contact on the radio every day with the bird rescue organization that was contracted by Alyeska to take care of these birds.

It was an International Bird Rescue and there was a guy named Jay that was running that whole show.

So they -- I think they had 18 boats in the beginning out of Seward and I think that expanded 25 or more as the time went on.

And that was just the bird rescue.

They had a major cleanup operation out here that had I don’t know how many boats. Lots.

Anybody that -- that -- people were buying boats in the Gulf [of Alaska] and driving them up here to try to get contracted.

ALICIA ZORZETTO: Wow. BOB LINVILLE: The thing is there was a lot of money here and it's --

it was more than I believed I'd ever see, but I believe for the Coyote it was like a thousand dollars a day for the contract. And for the Zodiac and the operator it was four hundred dollars a day. ALICIA ZORZETTO: Wow.

BOB LINVILLE: And if I remember right, the oper -- the contract was the operator and the boat not just -- so if you worked for the oil spill, you got paid $16.00 an hour.

Everybody that actually was employed, so that two people that were on our boat were getting $16.00 an hour.

And I was receiving $400 for the Zodiac, which had to have an operator. So only one of them was actually getting paid from the oil spill cause the other was the operator of the Zodiac, and I was getting -- working on the Coyote.

It was like a thousand dollars a day, which in 1989 and that was just more money than I could possibly --

and we made that some days fishing, you know, but to have this happening every day was like --

It was a corrupting influence I would say among everybody coastwide.

You know, and there was a competition to get these contracts going on here in Seward that was really kind of unseemly, you know, but I think the people that were --

that fished lower Cook Inlet that live here, I mean, they were devastated by this thing.

I mean they needed to go to work here. ALICIA ZORZETTO: Yeah.

BOB LINVILLE: There was going to be a cleanup operation and they needed to be involved in it, you know.

They needed to get paid.

ALICIA ZORZETTO: Yes.

BOB LINVILLE: And they definitely suffered the harm.

And as it turned out in hindsight after 25 years or whatever when we got settled with and that's probably the only money you were going to get for a long time.

ALICIA ZORZETTO: Right.

BOB LINVILLE: So if you didn’t get it, you really hurt yourself.

ALICIA ZORZETTO: Right.

BOB LINVILLE: And a lot of these people the fisheries have just -- you can debate what caused it, but the herring fishery there's no debate.

The oil company denies it. They've killed it.

You know, in Sitka and everywhere else in the state -- Kodiak and Togiak and -- herring --

we had one of the biggest herring biomasses in the state. It's just dead now, you know. They killed it.

They were spawning when -- on the oil beaches when it happened.

But salmon I don’t know, you know. I blame them. ALICIA ZORZETTO: Right.

BOB LINVILLE: This is in the 90’s, we had a really big struggle with pink salmon.

A lot of wild creeks I don’t think are still back to what they were.

Same with herring -- I mean you have a spawning fish come in and spawn in an oil -- oiled stream, it's going to have effects on the future generations.

That’s my opinion.

ALICIA ZORZETTO: Yeah.

BOB LINVILLE: But anyway so these contracts were -- you had --

the money was big enough where you had people coming in from all over trying to get these contracts.

And there were -- their offices were up at the top of what's now the Kenai Fjords building [Kenai Fjords National Park]. ALICIA ZORZETTO: Uh-huh.

BOB LINVILLE: And so there's a set of stairs going up there and it's just like this, you know --

First problem you’d have if you wanted to get a contract was getting up this set of stairs, you know.

There was this massive group of --

ALICIA ZORZETTO: Line? BOB LINVILLE: People wanting to get in on this, you know.

This is the way it was, I mean.

And that was after -- at the beginning we were down in a little -- they had a rented house -- the Incident Command Service downtown in the --

I mean that wasn’t -- it was the panic to get contract hadn't yet started, so that was kind of like the people right here in Seward that were fishermen that needed it -- do something.

That’s who initially signed up. Later they were still doing contracts in June -- mid-June and then it was just free for all.

I think there was a huge amount of corruption there, you know. Who got contracts and who didn’t depend on who made side deals and did this and that in the end.

I don’t think there was in the beginning. ALICIA ZORZETTO: Uh-huh.

BOB LINVILLE: But that’s the contract side of the money.

On the -- so I can just speak from my own experience at Driftwood Bay. You know we -- we worked basically our contract with Alyeska.

We didn’t work for VECO. And Alyeska contracted that out to International Bird Rescue, so those of us who on the bird rescue portion of things were working for International Bird Rescue. That’s who was in charge of us.

Every day there'd be a radio call and they'd want to know, you know, if you were bringing in any live birds.

And how many live birds and how many dead birds and what areas you covered.

And so it was pretty much a once or twice a day call.

And so like I said there was a lot of birds in the beginning and as time passed they weren’t any live birds.

There was plenty of dead birds and we didn’t run into town with dead birds.

We just accumulate them until we had quite a few, and then we’d go to town or somebody else would come out and get them from us.

But since our area was the Cape [Resurrection], that's kind of the closest, you know, private land to the Cape.

And it's something we really care about -- our locale out there.

We've -- and that’s where all the birds are and more bird concentration then really any rookery for a long ways up and down the coast so we --

we patrolled that daily -- extensively.

And the other people, you know, in Day Harbor and just on their own boats were patrolling the whole rest of the coast.

But there was pressure to get live birds. That's the sad part of this.

And I think it came right from the -- I would -- I would say that initially I think, Jay, who was running that program didn’t really know that he was causing it.

I think his intentions were good. ALICIA ZORZETTO: Uh-huh.

BOB LINVILLE: But because of the money involved and they -- it took them time to set up their operation --

they got a pretty big one going, they needed live birds to -- to feed this operation.

ALICIA ZORZETTO: Right.

BOB LINVILLE: And I don’t even remember how it fully developed, but it got to be along in June that there was --

every day there was a call for what you did and how many birds you had.

And there was kind of, you know, there's 18 -- I think by then there was like 25 boats trying to get these birds.

And I just felt that when I heard some boats say they had 11 or 12 or 20 live birds or something and this was not really an oiled live bird here, you know.

There's a reason why they’re getting all these birds and that’s --

I’m out there every day in the thickest bird concentration on the coast and I know what’s out there for live birds.

And so we started feeling pressure over the radio because we weren’t reporting any live birds.

I mean maybe one or two or four or something, but we weren’t bringing in 10, 15, 20 live birds a day.

ALICIA ZORZETTO: Right.

BOB LINVILLE: And I was willing to just leave that alone, you know.

I’m not going to go oil a bird so I can keep this contract, but we'll just go on about our little world here and unfortunately we did catch two separate boats doing just that.

And the best place to do it is at Cape Resurrection because it's rugged.

There's little caves that go in and the birds that aren’t oiled that did live through this whole horrific event or -- just like they always are.

The murres -- they sit up on the rocks and cormorants and murres are back in the caves a lot of times. ALICIA ZORZETTO: Uh-huh.

BOB LINVILLE: And that’s the best place to catch a bird.

You can get in your Zodiac and you can just roar -- you know, they give you the nets so you’ve got all the big long handled dipnets that you want.

ALICIA ZORZETTO: Right. BOB LINVILLE: And you just roar into this cave.

And the birds they’ve got to leap off the rocks that are, you know, maybe at the back of the cave maybe 10 feet above the water.

And they've got to, you know, get down along the water to get out of there before they can --

and they're going to get out of there with you coming in there.

ALICIA ZORZETTO: Right. BOB LINVILLE: And you can just catch them, you know, with your dipnet.

It's not that hard and that’s what they were doing.

ALICIA ZORZETTO: Oh, that’s terrible.

BOB LINVILLE: Two separate boats that we personally ran into them. We were only out there for a few hours a day.

And they were boats that weren’t really even tasked to be in that area, but they wanted to keep their contracts. They were bigger boats.

They were making probably $1,500, $2,000 a day and they wanted to produce.

That’s what they felt they -- we got this over the radio like, you know, how many did you get? How many did you get? How many did you get?

And they wanted to do a good job, you know, and it's just part of my own little experience with the corruption of having money dumped on a bunch of people.

ALICIA ZORZETTO: Well, what was your mental state during all this?

BOB LINVILLE: We told them, you know, that -- we catch you guys doing this again we're going to take your dipnets and bust them.

We weren’t going to turn anybody in, take their contract away or anything, just quit killing birds, you know. ALICIA ZORZETTO: Right.

BOB LINVILLE: You don't need to be doing that. This is not something you got to do.

ALICIA ZORZETTO: Right. BOB LINVILLE: And I mean --

I know whose these people are. I mean these aren’t strangers, you know, and I -- I don’t hold any grudges against anybody for this.

I -- I’m just reporting it cause this is an interview that -- this is where this should be told.

I mean in the future if you’re going throw a whole bunch of money out there and tell people to bring in live birds they’re not going to keep their --

their daily thousands of dollars, they’re going to bring in live birds. ALICIA ZORZETTO: Right.

BOB LINVILLE: This is just you should expect this to happen.

ALICIA ZORZETTO: Right.

BOB LINVILLE: And I think after a certain point I think Jay knew that's what's happening.

I don’t think it was a shock to him. ALICIA ZORZETTO: Uh-huh.

BOB LINVILLE: I think he pretty much knew, you know, this is what was going on.

He was also hooked up with this huge amount of money. I don’t know what their contract was, but it was gigantic I’m sure.

And he was probably afraid if he didn’t have live birds coming in, they’d tone it down.

So our friends who live over across Day Harbor and had -- they had like a 23 foot open boat and they were contracting for that.

It was more money than they had ever -- they weren’t fishermen. They'd never seen money like that in their lives, you know.

And they wanted to keep that going as long as they could and they felt the pressure, but they knew that we weren’t, you know, we were good friends.

So after this one call one day, you know, we got the word that you guys got to start bringing in some live birds.

We hadn’t for about a week. Not that we hadn’t been looking.

They said everybody else was. You guys -- or whoever it wasn’t they said you got to -- you got to start -- they’re going cut the contract. ALICIA ZORZETTO: Uh-huh.

BOB LINVILLE: And we were going to go, you know, if we weren’t producing live birds.

It was about -- it’s about twenty minutes across there where the skiff goes 25 or 30 knots to get from the --

where our friends live over on the other side of Day Harbor to our place and it took them about thirty minutes to get to our place.

And they had the nets and the oil bucket and boxes and everything they need to produce live birds and they were headed for the Cape.

If they wanted to stop and talk it over and I just said I’m not going to do it, you know.

And I’m going to write a letter and take it into Jay and if he doesn’t believe it then I’m going to publish it, you know. I’m going to get it in the paper.

This is, you know, it’s not something you need to lose your contract over. It just doesn’t need to be happening.

And so those guys agreed, let’s do it this way and I wrote a letter. I think I probably --

I might have a copy of it somewhere.

It just outlined that whole scenario.

And I took it in and I gave it to the lady at the counter and she read it.

And Jay came out and he read it and he just said, "You really believe this is what’s going on?"

I think he already knew, but I told him this is --

I’m not making this up, you know and --

ALICIA ZORZETTO: We’ve heard lots of --

I won’t say specifically about birds, but we’ve heard lots of similar stories how -- how things -- how money can lead to --

BOB LINVILLE: None of the people that did that really -- it was the money.

ALICIA ZORZETTO: Yeah. BOB LINVILLE: They wouldn't ever think of anything like that.

Anyway, Jay, he didn’t -- he took it seriously.

He didn’t want that going in the paper.

And he pretty much had to cut the contract back. And it wasn’t the people were not bringing in live birds that he -- he made his decision some other way.

I think that’s the way it was going to be.

and in the end those of who had places out there didn’t get cut cause we were the ones that weren’t bringing in the birds.

It was going to be if we would have got cut it would have been like the people who live out there and really care about it would've been the ones that got fired first. ALICIA ZORZETTO: Right.

BOB LINVILLE: And the ones that, you know, maybe in contracts somehow would've been the ones still on.

ALICIA ZORZETTO: It sounds like all this is part of a bigger picture of this, you know, this event --

this cleanup event to kind of show that there -- it was more of a show than actually trying to fix a problem.

BOB LINVILLE: Well, that’s what it is on Exxon’s part. They needed to control the publicity.

ALICIA ZORZETTO: Right.

BOB LINVILLE: I think it really -- not much of this had much affect beyond that.

ALICIA ZORZETTO: To be (inaudible).

BOB LINVILLE: We didn’t really -- I think we saved some live animals, but compared to the number that were killed I don’t know if it's a significant number.

ALICIA ZORZETTO: Right.

BOB LINVILLE: And so Exxon they got a ton of money and that's what they can do.

And they started dumping that out and everybody shuts up.

It was the rhetoric from the fishermen was getting pretty bad, you know --

ALICIA ZORZETTO: How were you -- BOB LINVILLE: Before Exxon started hiring.

ALICIA ZORZETTO: How were you handling this though like as far as yourself cause it must have been so,

you know, going from this wistful life of fishing and the beautiful outdoors in Alaska and then experiencing complete chaos.

It must have been really difficult for you to -- to kind of get through that?

BOB LINVILLE: Well, you know, the actual environmental damage, you know, I don’t know if I can ever get used to it.

I mean it’s pretty bad. ALICIA ZORZETTO: Right.

BOB LINVILLE: But beyond that is the whole working for the spill, whatever, that's just a job, you know, like I said, I work construction. ALICIA ZORZETTO: Right.

BOB LINVILLE: I worked for the oil industry at Prudhoe Bay and stuff and just for a contractor’s construction.

I mean, I know what a job is.

ALICIA ZORZETTO: Right.

BOB LINVILLE: It's doing a job.

I really was disgusted with the impact on our beach and our family. You couldn’t get across that beach without stepping in the oil, basically forever.

I mean all -- most of the summer.

And that’s the beach we were on that summer.

I went fishing. I had the Coyote on the contract, like I said, I left on May 5th so I got hired on May 10th or April 10th.

And I left and just signed out of that whole contract, you know, on May 5th.

And financially I should have stayed, but I was partners with my brother and we’d already made our agreement who was going to fish when. ALICIA ZORZETTO: Uh-huh.

BOB LINVILLE: You know, we'd done this three prior years and so I decided I was going to keep that agreement.

And as it turned out the first three weeks of fishing we did better than if we got the -- stayed on the contract, but after that the whole rest of the season there really was nothing.

So in the end we really should have took the contract and we didn’t make a quarter of what those guys did.

But whatever, you know, it's fine.

I left to go fishing, you know, the other two guys and my wife and kids with all their drifting and they kept going on getting birds with the Zodiac.

I stayed gone and when I came back from Cordova it was like the first week of June some time and I got involved in that again while Dick was fishing.

And so I -- we stayed on that until -- I left again in August when Dick had had a enough and he quit, my brother.

And so at that point they're winding down -- the bird rescue part of this whole thing.

And I think Patty and Steve and Bruce were the two guys they stayed at the cabin for another week or so after I left.

And I left again because I wanted to -- the setnet operation they'd had a cleanup going -- huge cleanup going over there in Eshamy District.

One of those task forces was right there and it'd been oiled extensively.

And I really wanted to go see it.

You know, I didn’t want to just miss it, and if I stayed at Driftwood I would've missed that.

All I had to do was show up with a skiff and I’d have a contract there because I was a setnetters.

So I quit. I left over here I don’t know it was the last week of July I think that I left.

I’m not real sure. Some time in that time frame. ALICIA ZORZETTO: Okay.

BOB LINVILLE: I went to Whittier and our skiff was there in Whittier that we bought with the setnet site, and it was just a really kind of beat up fiberglass skiff. And so we rolled it over and built a tarp over it.

I had my friend Steve with me and we fiberglassed the bottom in a huge rainstorm --

got in the water and went out there and it was --

By that time they'd had all summer to build the whole cleanup thing up and they had the hot water wash going on with huge barge blasting hot water everywhere.

And they had lots of little crews working on different beaches that were oiled and they had a massive barge where everybody lived on.

This is task force that was based in Eshamy.

And so we went out and showed up for our first day and, I mean, they'd been doing this for at least a month so we were the newcomers, and we picked up a group of people and gave them a ride to a beach.

And they had rags and brushes and whatever to clean this beach, and we were like, you know, it's just hopeless.

I mean I -- I don’t blame any -- they can’t do this.

You can take a rock and you can work on that rock all day long and it's still going to be black and slimy.

I don’t care what you do and there, you know, there're like 10 or 15 people on this three or 400 foot long beach.

And oiled from high tide to low tide.

And I mean we're all just making money, that’s all we’re doing. ALICIA ZORZETTO: Yeah.

BOB LINVILLE: And as it turned out I think we did the best beach cleanup, you know, because the hot water wash killed everything in the beach. ALICIA ZORZETTO: Right.

BOB LINVILLE: None of us really knew, but I don’t think that was probably the way to go.

Not typically more logically.

ALICIA ZORZETTO: Yeah, they say looking back it was not good for the beaches.

BOB LINVILLE: I mean it was -- they were trying to get as much oil as they could.

I think it was really bad health wise for people involved in that, too.

ALICIA ZORZETTO: Yeah, where they cov -- were they covered, from what you saw?

BOB LINVILLE: No, we weren’t, you know. We didn’t have really any protective. We had rain gear.

ALICIA ZORZETTO: Okay.

BOB LINVILLE: They, you know, it didn’t stink as bad as it did. I mean, it reeks.

It didn’t smell good, but it wasn’t as bad as like when we flew over in the plane. I don’t think you could really breathe that for all day long without just getting sick.

ALICIA ZORZETTO: Right. BOB LINVILLE: Right there, you know.

This stuff you could be in it all day.

But I think over time it did seriously make people sick.

ALICIA ZORZETTO: Yeah.

BOB LINVILLE: So I only did that for like two or three weeks and then Steve was still working there with our skiff.

And I went to fish, cause they opened it up for silvers right up inside where the Esther [Island] Hatchery is there. ALICIA ZORZETTO: Uh-huh.

BOB LINVILLE: It was right in those bays right there so they could make sure there was no oil.

ALICIA ZORZETTO: Right. BOB LINVILLE: And there wasn’t hardly anybody fishing so I went up there and did that.

It really kind of was -- it wasn’t very good for a year, but at least we did catch ourselves more fish there at the end.

I fished until like the middle of September, I think.

ALICIA ZORZETTO: Well, it must have felt good to do a little fishing, too?

BOB LINVILLE: I was outside of the whole oil. There was -- ALICIA ZORZETTO: Yeah.

BOB LINVILLE: -- only probably five or six people fishing and we were completely removed -- ALICIA ZORZETTO: Yeah.

BOB LINVILLE: -- from the whole thing.

ALICIA ZORZETTO: You needed that.

BOB LINVILLE: Anyway, the next year that went on until whenever they shut it down the end of the season.

They clean up, and the next year we actually did build our setnet operation, we built our camp, got our nets and started figuring out how to fish our sites. And it was open most of the year.

There were certain areas of the coast -- of the Eshamy District that weren’t,

so it wasn’t like everything was open, but our particular sites were.

We were able to fish both of them.

And our beach was pretty much, you know, in the winter these huge storms come in and everything they churn the whole thing. So the oil was pretty much mixed in the aggregate from top to bottom.

I mean, it went all the way -- who knows how far down, but you’d have the water coming over it and the sun baking on it and there wouldn’t be -- on a cold rainy day you wouldn’t get oil on your feet when you walk on the beach.

On a hot sunny day, you get oil pretty much all over your feet because the oil comes up in the hot sun.

And just the way it was the first year on hot days, you know. If you didn’t wear your boots, you’re going to get oil on your feet,

but you wouldn’t nearly see it that much until you walked out there.

So you could drive around the Sound and look. I mean you’d see oil on some places, but it was -- the winters --

I mean if you went into a really protected bay and really got hit, it still be pretty visible.

After the first year, any beach that really got hammered by the winter storms it pretty much was either underground or moved on.

So they came -- I mean, off and on all summer long our family, my three little kids, my wife and I were living there with a crew member and their two little kids, you know.

They had -- a lot of little kids there, and we were just dealing with it, you know.

And they came and analyzed the beach several times and they decided to do a bioremediation there.

And, you know, we did have some big mats, too, that are just like hard asphalt that were kind of heavy enough to where they didn’t get floated off.

I mean, I don’t know how that works, but somehow that stuff just settled -- it floated in hard enough to sink,

and so they came in and carried those off. That's the thickest part that they could get.

And the rest of it they decided just to spray this Corexit on the whole beach, you know.

ALICIA ZORZETTO: Corexit -- the dispersant?

BOB LINVILLE: Yeah. It's not a dispersant. It's a bioremediation. [corrected by Bob Linville to "They called it bioremediation." in transcript review on 6/4/14] ALICIA ZORZETTO: Okay.

BOB LINVILLE: Dispersants just to make the oil like jelly itself. It just makes it go down out of sight.

It doesn’t get rid of any oil.

ALICIA ZORZETTO: Okay.

BOB LINVILLE: Bioremediation it’s -- it’s probably a good concept. I mean it - it let’s the natural bacteria decay the oil. ALICIA ZORZETTO: Uh-huh.

BOB LINVILLE: That’s better than trying to wash it out of there with hot water or anything.

It just tries to make it -- the degradation of the oil speed up.

I don’t know how effective it is unless you're trying bioremediate something that’s four feet under the surface.

ALICIA ZORZETTO: Right.