Beach. "By the time we finish sometime next week, we'll have 3,000
tons of material."
The crew, which usually consists of 10 to 15 people, has been
making piles of sticks and other debris and trucking it to various
dump sites. Many of the workers clean the beach by hand, with large
machines to take care of the big stuff.
Anderson, who has worked for the city for 30 years, said much of
the debris is from the Santa Ana River and Prado Dam in Riverside
County, which was opened during January's torrential rains.
"It [the debris] is from the original rains; add the Del Prado
water on top of it.... It cleans out all the catch basins and
everything," Anderson said.
Once the debris from the winter storms is cleared away, Anderson's
crew will go back to daily maintenance of the beaches.
"We're pretty much done now. This is just the little stuff that's
stuck between the rocks and the jetties," Anderson said. "We've got
to remove all the sticks, so it's a safe environment for the kids to
walk and play in -- we don't want anyone to get hurt.
"You can clean an area, and it will be fine for a couple of days.
Then a different swell will come in and bring in all kinds of new
Local surfers have seen the crew working the beaches, and most
have noticed a difference since the big rain storms.
"After the rains, that was a massive clean-up job," said Allen
Passaquindici of Huntington Beach, who surfs in Newport about once a
week. "They've done a good job."
Pooch McLain, a Costa Mesa surfer who calls Newport Beach his
"second home away from home," said the cleaning crews have done an
amazing job and have been working really hard.
"Anytime the debris comes in, they get right on it," he said. "I'm
a surfer, and they clean it out so I can walk across the sand."
Newport Beach's Ron Young said that compared to a lot of other
beaches, Newport is very clean.
"They're excellent," he said of the maintenance crew.
Newport Beach made a list of the top 10 cleanest beaches in
California, Anderson said.
"We have people that come to us from all over the world that have
heard about Newport Beach," he said. "We want to show them what it's
like here all the time."
Anderson grew up on 27th Street, by Newport Beach, and has lived
in the area his entire life.
"I started out hand-sweeping the streets and just worked my way
up," he said. "Most of the guys [in the crew] live around here and
use the beach.... They take a lot of pride in their work. This is
kind of like taking care of your yard, because we're here
everyday.... That's how I look at it anyways."