Tuesday, June 22, 2010

Power Crazy: Shoreham Breakwater

At the eastern end of Shoreham Beach, the ill fated Shoreham Nuclear Power Plant comes into view.  It sits about a thousand feet inland along the Wading River, which serves as the border between the towns of Riverhead and Brookhaven. A hundred feet south of the beach there are fences with signs warning people to "keep out". With no intention of trespassing, I stayed close to the waterline as I continued eastward. There was a jetty ahead with a dozen or so people on it, and I decided to take a closer look.

It is a relatively safe jetty that was easy to walk, and there were no signs stating that it was private property. There was a couple sharing a boxed lunch while the others all appeared to be fishing. Halfway out, I heard a horn being blasted from the beach area behind me. Turning around, I saw a security-type SUV with two large men approaching the breakwater.
I would never succeed as a tabloid reporter. My camera is able to record video, but at that moment, it never occured to me. Instead of filming what was taking place, I slipped the camera back into my pocket as the two men approached.
The only thing he said to me was "You're under arrest, stand over there" as he pointed to the beach area adjacent to the jetty. They never identified themselves, and there was no logo on their shirts, but I knew they were not cops. I assumed they were from the power plant, but I was not completely sure.
I really wanted to explain to them that I was scheduled to be in Rocky Point for dinner at 6 pm. But, rather than dig myself into a bigger hole, I followed orders and walked back to the beach. They proceeded to round everyone up as they made their way out the jetty. Some sort of confusion developed with one group, and at that moment, I made the decision to run. Sweaty and out of breath, I reached the car and got the hell out of Dodge.
Soundbounder the fugitive!


Anonymous said...

Great story :)

Erica Houskeeper said...

You could honestly write a book with some of these stories. This one is creepy, and I would have been terrified of those power plant guys. Glad you got out of there!

Bill said...

Great story. I would have run too...

bonnie said...

Scary she-it, man!

Mike said...

Those jetties are listed on a number of dive sites as being good for lobstering. I used to dive Shinnecock Inlet ages ago and, if the threat of arrest was a little more clear, maybe I'd give these jetties a try!

callsign222 said...

Looking forward to post #3! What's next, crazy cameltoe lady, crazy powerplant gaurds, I'm going to go with the mythical LIS seaweed monster!

Water was really nice this weekend too (at least on the CT side), to bad the beach was closed.

matthew houskeeper said...

I should have done the more safe thing and gone to the Mermaid Parade instead.

It is amazing that even though I am not jumping fences or ignoring "private property" signs, these things still happen.

matthew houskeeper said...

I am wondering if the two jetties are private or not. The property for the plant is clearly marked off. Also, there is a town boat ramp on the Wading River side that is much closer to the plant than this jetty.

Fortunately, the rest of the day was smooth. 3rd post will just be about the power plant itself.

Thanks Bill, thanks Anonymous!

Mike said...

Hey Matthew,
I sent off an email regarding the jetties and received this response"
"The jetties, canal, and property at the Shoreham Facility are private property owned by National Grid. There is no access for the public nor is fishing permitted ."
Oh well

原秋原秋 said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
matthew houskeeper said...

Sorry for the slow response. Thanks so much for that info. Still find it strange that there is no marker stating Keep Off, and that the guards first response was to arrest people, rather than explain it was private property.

Mark Kreider said...

If I'd been there there would have been trouble! I can't abide thugs wielding faux authority. Did they think the potato salad was the highly explosive kind?

Great stories as always!