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Not specifically sailing, but a fascinating look at a disturbing trend…

From Southern California to Maine, the foundering economy, high fuel prices and poor fishing have driven boat owners to abandon perhaps thousands of vessels on the waterfront, where they are beginning to break up and sink, leaking oil and other pollutants. Boats have long been a barometer of consumer confidence, disposable income, and the overall state of the economy. Now, marina and harbor officials are reporting a sudden increase in the past year in the number of deserted pleasure boats and working vessels.

In Antioch, a town about 45 miles east of San Francisco, harbormaster John Cruger-Hansen showed up at his marina one day last spring to find the horizon changed overnight. On the San Joaquin River, he saw an old crane, a rusted barge, a tugboat and an assortment of other junked boats, all of which had been hauled in and left illegally. Read the entire story at Boston.com.