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Bitumen dumped at Marina turns up on city beaches

When taking a stroll along the city beaches you can expect to find seashells, driftwood and jellyfish.

But on Sunday a Gisborne resident discovered a black blob that looked like tar.

Residents found two sizeable blobs on the weekend and a smaller amount on Waikanae and Midway beaches.

The Gisborne District Counci was notified and the pollution response team and Harbourmaster attended.

“We have found the likely source,” said Harbourmaster Salvatore “Sonny” Ali.

“It appears someone has dumped bitumen down the Marina boat ramp.”

He asked if anyone discovered any more washed up, to make contact us to clean it up.

“Call us on 0800 653 800, or report it via the GDC Fix app, or alternatively email

with details of where on the beach.

The GDC had taken samples to be tested to confirm what the substance is.

The Harbour Master has notified the marine pollution response service of Maritime NZ and will continue to monitor the situation.

■ Bitumen is a black viscous mixture of hydrocarbons obtained naturally or as a residue from petroleum distillation. It is used for road surfacing and roofing.

BITUMEN DEPOSITS: These blobs were discovered last weekend along Waikanae and Midway beaches. Picture supplied to the GDC