Coast Guard crews monitor sunken vessel in Ilwaco Channel, Wash.

Coast Guard Sector Columbia River LogoSEATTLE — Coast Guard incident management crews are monitoring a sunken fishing vessel for pollution and hazard to navigation concerns in the Ilwaco Channel near Ilwaco, Wash., Saturday.

There is a potential of 500 gallons of diesel fuel aboard the vessel.

At 5:38 a.m., watchstanders at Coast Guard Sector Columbia River in Warrenton, Ore., received a report from a good Samaritan via VHF-FM channel 16 that the 37-foot fishing vessel Four Forty had struck a piling in Ilwaco channel.

The good Samaritan rescued the two people aboard Four Forty before the vessel sank approximately 100 yards east of the “A” Jetty in about 40 feet of water.

Coast Guard pollution responders and investigators arrived on scene around 8:40 a.m. and are actively monitoring the situation. A light sheening has been reported in the area.

The owner of Four Forty is working with a salvage company to remove the vessel from the channel. Its position has been marked by a red cherry buoy and Coast Guard watchstanders have issued a Safety Marine Information Broadcast to alert mariners in the area.

“We are asking all mariners to steer clear of the area around the sunken vessel,” said Petty Officer 1st Class J.M. “Mike” Bennett, situations unit controller at Sector Columbia River. “The crews on scene are working to mitigate any potential pollution and remove the vessel as quickly as possible.”

Coast Guard officials are investigating the incident.

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