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Do plastics clog motors or impair other mechanical parts?

Posted on November 07 2012

Question submitted by Shenendehowa High School

Any inflow of seawater, including the continuous seaweater flow-through system in the lab, has a filter in place to trap large particles and prevent them from clogging the system.  Plastic clogging the outboard motor could be a problem if we used the small inflatable boat frequently.  

What we take very seriously is the possibility of our propeller being fouled by fishing nets or other types of floating plastic line.  We have a lookout posted in the bow during the day who has a radio to let the watch on the aft deck know to stop the propeller immediately if line capable of wrapping around it goes under the hull of the Seamans.

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