The Bosporus, the busiest waterway of Turkey, has its fair share of garbage. Volunteers and municipalities often clean it up, but nowadays, it is home to a different kind of trash: masks and gloves.
Isa Şahintürk, the first diver to take underwater photos and videos of the Bosporus during the three months of the coronavirus outbreak, says face masks and gloves were among the most common items he came across.
Although the amount of garbage dumped in the waterway decreased thanks to restrictions such as curfews, the waters are still polluted. Şahintürk says water pollution levels had not changed much as wastewater continued to be dumped into the Bosporus, but the amount of garbage hurled into the sea by passersby decreased.
Decreasing maritime traffic, weekend curfews and a ban on fishing on the coast afforded the Bosporus some quiet days since March. Dolphins, a rarity in the pre-pandemic era, have been sighted multiple times in the deserted waterway.