Many people gone after second day of Springwater Trail sweep, bu - KPTV - FOX 12

Many people gone after second day of Springwater Trail sweep, but camps remain

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Springwater Corridor (KPTV) Springwater Corridor (KPTV)
Johnson Creek at Springwater Corridor (KPTV) Johnson Creek at Springwater Corridor (KPTV)

Many people who had been camping along the Springwater Corridor in Portland were gone by the second day of a major sweep, but their camps remained.

City workers said cleaning up the camps left behind could take days, if not weeks.

"It looks cleaner than what it was, but it's probably going to take them a couple of big dumpsters by what I've seen," said camper Leslie Kent Harris.

The clearing effort on the trail began Thursday. As homeless people move on, biohazard crews are moving in.

The City of Portland reported that nearly 1,000 needles had been collected Friday alone, including 16 pulled from Johnson Creek.

Another 500 needles were collected from the camps on Thursday.

Piles of garbage, baskets of bicycle parts and even furniture littered the area.

Some of it had fallen into the waters of Johnson Creek.

One of the remaining campers Friday, Charles Blackmon, said he has called the Springwater Corridor home since March. He said he understands the frustrations of both campers and neighbors and believes a lack of communication led to the sweep.

"You know what they forgot to do? Keep talking to one another. This is home to both sides," he said.

City leaders said police will patrol the area on bikes and ATVs over the weekend. The cleanup efforts will continue Tuesday.

Items considered usable are being collected, documented and put in storage for at least 30 days by an agency called Pacific Patrol Services.

Items believed to be stolen, including bicycles and bike parts, will be turned over to officers to look for serial numbers or other identifying marks.

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