Eyewitness Account of Herbicide Spraying on Sentinel Firs Road

August 20, 2019.
Sentinel Firs Rd, Port Hadlock

Awakened by sound of helicopters at 5:50 am. Got up, went to Mark Jochems property on Sentinel Firs. Arrived at about 6:25. Mark was standing near on his property near the property line he shares with Pope Resources. I joined him. Mark grows organic apples which he sells to a local processor for juice.

A helicopter was spraying herbicide on the clearcut which borders his property, making sweeps and going back to the pad to reload herbicide. It had already sprayed close to Mark’s property when I arrived, and had moved South, deeper into the clearcut and further from his property.

About 5 minutes after arriving, I became aware of the smell of herbicide. Until that moment I was mostly paying attention to the helicopter, not to what I was breathing. The spraying continued for about 30 minutes after I arrived. As we walked the very few feet to his house for coffee, I noticed that my breathing was impaired. Even with a shallow breath, I could feel that my lungs were definitely compromised. Deep breaths were worse. The sensation of impaired breathing increased as we sat talking.

I started drinking large amounts of water, and took vitamin C. It occurred to me that a blood test could show glyphosate, the herbicide they were spraying, in my blood. But, then I recalled that when members of the European Parliament were tested for glyphosate, they all tested positive. So, one might suspect that we all now have glyphosate in our blood. I just got a higher dose, by being adjacent to the spray site, on private property, where no drift is allowed.

Gail Chatfield, 10 am, August 20, 2019