Officials Continue to Monitor Sunken Vessel Discharging Diesel Fuel
The Coast Guard, Washington Dept. of Ecology, Dept. of Health, and Dept. of Natural Resources continue to monitor the sunken fishing vessel Deep Sea located in Penn Cove near Whidbey Island, Wash.
The Deep Sea is discharging approximately one to two gallons of diesel fuel per minute. A boom deployment vessel and an oil recovery vessel are working to contain the leak. In addition, a Ballard Diving and Salvage dive team is siphoning diesel from the vessel's fuel tanks.
Two layers of containment boom have been placed around the vicinity of the sunken vessel with a third layer due to be in place. Approximately 550 gallons of fuel and 30 bags of absorbent pads have been recovered.
Coast Guard pollution investigators are on-scene and will continue to monitor the cleanup operation until it is complete.
Dept. of Ecology scientists are collecting water samples for laboratory analysis and are inspecting shore areas for possible spill-related damage to the habitat and wildlife.
The Dept. of Health is working with the shellfish harvester and local, state, and federal partners to monitor the situation. Fuel from the boat has been contained away from shellfish growing areas, so there's no need for harvest limitations based on the incident. The state health Shellfish Program supports the company's immediate voluntary decision to suspend harvest as a precaution.
The Dept. of Natural Resources is working in cooperation with the Coast Guard and Ecology to determine the best course of action for removing the vessel that will protect the environment and the shellfish resources.
Source: U.S. Coast Guard - http://www.d13.uscgnews.com