Gluesenkamp Perez Visits Port of Ilwaco, Holds Roundtable on Fire at Seafood Processing Facility

Jan 27, 2024
Rep. Gluesenkamp Perez and State Senator Jeff Wilson speak with crab fishermen in Ilwaco, WA.

Today, Rep. Marie Gluesenkamp Perez (WA-03) visited the Port of Ilwaco and held a roundtable to discuss the Monday fire at a local seafood processing facility, right before the start of commercial crab season.

The roundtable included first responders, community leaders, and Port of Ilwaco leadership. The group discussed the effects of the fires, what resources are available to rebuild, and how the Congresswoman can best support at the federal level.

They also spoke about how the Ilwaco community is coming together in the wake of the incident, whether it’s through disaster relief funds, loaned crab pots, or folks donating their time, meals, or supplies.

Following the roundtable, Rep. Gluesenkamp Perez walked around the port to speak with crab fishermen at work who were directly impacted by the fire.

“In the wake of a devastating fire at the start of crab season, it’s been amazing to see the Ilwaco community come together to support the livelihoods of their neighbors. Thank you to those who courageously responded to the fire and have since given back to our community,” said Rep. Gluesenkamp Perez. “I appreciate everyone who took the time today to share how they were affected, and I’ll continue to advocate for local crabbers as we rebuild.”

Rep. Gluesenkamp Perez holds a roundtable with community members in Ilwaco, WA.

Separately, today, Rep. Gluesenkamp Perez sent a letter to NOAA Administrator Richard Spinrad, urging the agency to replace inoperable weather buoys at the mouth of the Columbia River that are critical to providing up-to-date and accurate weather information that can help crabbers operate safely.

The Monday fire at the Bornstein Seafoods facility destroyed thousands of crab pots, as well as several structures and boats. Some firefighters at the scene were treated by emergency medical services for exhaustion. Crabbers are able to start dropping pots beginning Monday at 8 a.m. 

Rep. Gluesenkamp Perez continues to encourage anyone affected by the incident to reach out to her office, which can help connect them to resources.

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