ASTORIA, Ore. -- Oregon coastal residents and visitors were urged to use caution after receiving reports of hazardous marine markers washing ashore Monday.

Police and Air Force personnel found three Mark 25 Marine Markers along the coast last week.

The markers are used by military aircraft to mark locations in the ocean. They contain white phosphorous, which ignites when in contact with the air.

Oregon State Police said the marine markers posed a potential safety risk.

The markers could still contain phosphorous due to malfunction or just leftover residue, according to OSP Detective Howard Greer.

The remaining phosphorous could spontaneously ignite, causing serious injury.

Anyone who finds a marine marker should not touch it, secure the area 100 feet in each direction, and call the Oregon State Police at 1-800-452-7888.

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