Deflated birthday balloons causes massive response off Emma Schmitz memorial park

A rescue response of about two dozen vehicles and several coastguard/police boats converged along the shores of Emma Schmitz Memorial Overlook at around 10:00PM tonight. A witness called in what they thought was a parachuter dropping into the sound about 200 yards off the beach. After 40 minutes of searching, divers and boats at the scene radioed in a large bouquet of mylar balloons floating in the water. Surprise! Close to a hundred or so spectators lined the street to witness the non-event unfold.


A rescue diver assesses the theater…


It was actually nice to see a false alarm for once on this stretch a beach that’s witnessed it’s share of tragedies.


Scupper, reporting for Beach Drive Blog


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  1. Helium balloons and sky lanterns that are released into the environment become TRASH when they come back down – strangling and suffocating birds and marine life. The only good thing about this response is that, hopefully, the balloons were removed from Puget Sound and it gives visibility to this on-going issue.

    People need to remember that what goes up, does indeed come down – as ugly and DANGEROUS trash.

    • Scupper says:

      Besides that good reminder, what a waste of perfectly good helium. It should’ve been inhaled to talk funny and make the kids laugh!


  1. […] Last night’s onlookers watching responders searching the waters for false alarm parachuter […]

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