Juan Zalama Perini/staff
Lorraine Chave, Petone Beach Cleanup Crew Coordinator, has some of the 700 nails.
Locals are warning people enjoying summer beach bonfires to be careful after finding around 2kg of nails in a pallet used as fuel for a bonfire abandoned on a Wellington beach.
Petone Beach Clean Up Crew coordinator Lorraine Shaab said nails on the beach near Seaview Marina are a big problem.
The small, secluded beach was a popular spot for bonfires, fueled by beachgoers using wooden pallets collected from nearby industrial areas.
“They think the ground is trash … I think there’s a mindset that it’s someone else’s problem,” Shaab said.
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Residues such as bottles, needles and nails were left on the beach more and more. This was very dangerous, she said, as the area was popular for dog walking.
Petone resident Catherine Hall said that in the week leading up to New Year’s Eve, she and her husband removed 700 nails from the beach by Seaview Marina.
The nail, weighing 1.8 kg, was the result of just one fire on the beach.
Hall was concerned that a nail could get stuck in someone’s leg.
She and her partner have been cleaning the beach strip for the past two years after taking an interest in cleaning Petne Beach.
Petne Beach Cleanup volunteers removed 165 bags of trash from Petne Beach in 2018. (Video he first published on December 21, 2018)
Eventually, the couple decided to start cleaning up Seaview Beach outside of the group, taking bags and picking up any plastic or debris they found there.
“Really, it’s just a way out of the house. It’s a really nice little beach.”
The beach was sheltered from the southerly winds by a crescent-shaped strip off Port Road on the north side of the marina.
In the week leading up to New Year’s Eve, Hall and her partner said they found a large number of nails in the remains of a fire on the beach.
Hall said beachgoers were most likely burning wooden pallets, which appeared to be “a ridiculous amount.”
Hall said he can avoid being near rocks at this time, but he fears the current stormy weather will cause the nails to get caught in the tide and wind and scatter them on the beach.
Hutt City Council has been reached for comment.