Video: U.S. Coast Guard Rescues Three From Grounded Fishing Vessel
[Brief] On Friday, the U.S. Coast Guard rescued three mariners from a commercial fishing vessel that ran aground and began taking on water two miles west of Anna Maria Island, a barrier island at the mouth of Tampa Bay on Florida's Gulf Coast.
Coast Guard Sector St. Petersburg received a channel 16 distress call from the Warrior's crew, who reported that that they had two feet of water on board and pumps were unable to keep up with the flooding. An MH-60 Jayhawk helicopter crew from Air Station Clearwater and a response boat out of Coast Guard Station Cortez were dispatched to the scene.
The response boat crew arrived at 1950 hours to assist the 70-foot fishing vessel. The boat crew took the three fishermen safely off the vessel and transferred them to a dock in Cortez. No injuries or medical concerns were reported.
The fiberglass-hulled vessel ultimately broke up, releasing an unknown amount of fuel and debris into the water. Cleanup efforts at Anna Maria Island continued over the weekend.
“The debris field from the wrecked shrimp trawler on the beach has pretty much all been removed, with the exception of a few very large pieces remaining near the beach access at Fir Avenue and a large water tank near Bean Point," said Anna Maria Mayor Dan Murphy, speaking to the local Anna Maria Island Sun. "These pieces will be removed over the next few days after cutting them into manageable pieces. The fuel smell has dissipated and appears to have not caused any major damage to the beach or dune system."
Salvage divers are working to evaluate the remaining wreck of the fishing vessel. Its fuel tanks had a maximum capacity of 7,000 gallons of diesel, and the total amount left on board is not yet known.