Taitung port blocked by driftwood from tropical storm

The huge amount of wood blocked ferries from carrying passengers in and out of the port, and all trips between Taitung and Green Island scheduled for Monday were canceled as a result, according to the Eastern Maritime Affairs Center. (NOWnews)
The huge amount of wood blocked ferries from carrying passengers in and out of the port, and all trips between Taitung and Green Island scheduled for Monday were canceled as a result, according to the Eastern Maritime Affairs Center. (NOWnews)

TAIPEPI (CNA) — The port of Fugang in Taitung County has been choked by a glut of driftwood that flowed in after Tropical Storm Bailu battered southern Taiwan on Saturday, blocking ferry service from the port to outlying islands on Monday.

A one-hectare “wood ocean” formed in waters around the port on Sunday, but the wood began flowing into the port area itself beginning early Monday because of the prevailing air current.

The huge amount of wood blocked ferries from carrying passengers in and out of the port, and all trips between Taitung and Green Island scheduled for Monday were canceled as a result, according to the Eastern Maritime Affairs Center.

On Monday, the center announced the cancellation of a ferry bound for Orchid Island at 9:15 a.m. Another ferry for Orchid Island, the Green Island Star, changed its point of departure to Chenggong Fishing Harbor about 40 kilometers north of Fugang.

The wood should be cleared within 2 to 3 days at the latest, said Taitung County Agriculture Department head Hsu Rui-kuei (許瑞貴).

As for the wood collected from the water, the Taitung Forest District Office said it does not have any inherent value and will be disposed as waste.

By Li Hsien-feng and intern Wang Jia-ling